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Posts Tagged ‘stephen halsey’

Firstly, thank you to the new wind blowing through East End Life (and to the reader who spotted it) for providing me with a new banner photo for this blog. Historic.

Secondly, good luck to all the candidates for the bust-up on June 11. Peter Golds was selected as the Tory candidate on Monday after a hustings at the Bow Belles pub in Bow Road. He secured 33 votes against seven for the only other candidate Ahmed Hussain. Ahmed’s pitch was that the Tory party needed to show more that it can and does reach out to the Bengali community. It’s worth noting that he’s taken much flak from people he had considered friends for siding with the Conservatives and he has played an important role in recent events over at the Royal Courts of Justice. Fortune favours the brave.

This is the full list of candidates as per the close of nominations on Thursday afternoon:

Screen Shot 2015-05-16 at 10.59.20

The candidates in the post-Alibor Choudhury Stepney Green by-election are:

Stepney Green

[Abu Chowdhury is the neo-Tower Hamlets First candidate. His LinkedIn profile is here. He used to be a caseworker in Lutfur’s office, his dad is a boss at the notorious London Bangla ‘newspaper’  , and worst of all he appears to be a Chelsea supporter. Anyway, good luck to him.]

Thirdly, over the coming days, Andy Erlam, John Biggs and Rabina Khan will be writing articles here explaining why they’re standing and what improvements they’d like to make to the way the council is run in the wake of the Lutfur Rahman eviction. Rabina’s article will hopefully explain why she’s insisting she’s not a “puppet” of Lutfur Rahman and very much her own woman, yet at the same time plastering his face all over her election leaflets (and engaging the dodgy invoice writer Cllr Ghulam Rabbani as her election agent, and appearing to fail to disclose who is promoting her leaflets and her campaign website):

rabina khan

 

Fourthly, there seems to be something of an edit war going on over Rabina Khan’s Wikipedia page. It’s had an awful lot of attention this month and as a result, it has this warning at the top:

Screen Shot 2015-05-16 at 11.06.39

 

There is a discussion about this among the Wikipedia editors here. One editor has questioned whether she, as a mere councillor, is actually “notable” enough to have a Wiki page.

The neutrality warning works both ways of course: it can apply as a warning to her or her supporters, for example, or to her enemies. Either way, over the past two weeks entries that have been critical of her have been added and removed several times.

The edit warring has been taking place, not surprisingly, over the section ‘Political career’. As of Saturday morning (today), this is how it stood:

Rabina 1 Wiki

 

ie

Electoral corruption

In April 2015 following the discharging of office of the former Mayor of Tower Hamlets Lutfur Rahman, Khan along with the remaining 17 Tower Hamlets First councillors were all named by Commissioner Richard Mawrey QC as being elected to Tower Hamlets Council as a result of corrupt and illegal practices.

At various other times references to her husband Cllr Aminur Khan’s association with the IFE have been added and deleted.

The same also applies to the taxi bills that Rabina racked up and which were later reported here on this blog. The following sentence has made its way on to the Wiki page, only to be deleted repeatedly within hours:

taxis

ie

In February 2013 Khan was widely critized for her use of taxi’s at taxpayer’s expense whilst apparently undertaking duties as a councilor. On one occasion Khan billed the taxpayer for £120 for a journey of just 1.5 miles.[20]

The reference number 20 at the end of that sentence is to the piece I wrote on this blog in 2013. Despite those figures coming directly from council papers, a Wikipedia editor stated that wasn’t a strong enough source and deleted the entry.

All this can be seen in the Revision History of Rabina’s wiki page here. In total, there have been 65 edits since April 25 when it was clear that Rabina would become Lutfur’s nomination.

So who’s been behind all these edits?

The revision history gives us a few IP addresses. One, which has been adding in some of the critical stuff, ie 91.213.110.4, is Tower Hamlets council IP address. So this is someone who works there. This IP address also matches an account called A Wikia Contributor at the London Birders Club. And on Wikipedia, this IP address has also been responsible for deleting information from the Wikipedia page of Labour councillor Shiria Khatun. I don’t know who this is and the IP address has never left a comment on this blog.

A couple of the other IP addresses listed on the revision history as having added in critical sections about Rabina also match IP addresses that have left comments on this blog before. Again, I don’t know the real names behind these people.

One of the most active critics has been a Wiki user called OneTowerHamlets, whose IP address details do not appear. Perhaps someone can help me with that.

Those who have been deleting the critical comments on Wikipedia fall into two categories: responsible Wiki editors who are trying to determine what’s accurate or not, e.g. PatGallacher; and those who have only a very recent Wikipedia editing account. One of those falling into the latter category complained that the taxi fares were being cited from a blog. They suggested this was against Wikipedia rules. Seems a silly rule to me. This same user was warned by another Wikipedia regular that their IP address appeared to be “very close to the individual in question”, ie Rabina.

The mystery of it all, eh? Politicos seem obsessed with editing Wikipedia. Such strange people.

Interestingly, of the challengers from the two other main parties in Tower Hamlets, only John Biggs has a Wikipedia entry. It’s small and straightforward (could make a Biggs campaign logo that possibly…).

John Biggs wikipedia

Peter Golds, meanwhile, appears in another person’s Wiki entry – that of Norma Major. Here:

Norma Major

I wonder if Peter could persuade Sir John Major to bring his soap box for a bit of campaigning.

Meanwhile, tomorrow it’s the Boishakhi Mela in Victoria Park. Le merde could be about to hit the fan on the running of that event…again. The Commissioners at a public meeting at the town hall this week decided to reject a £75,000 request for a council grant/subsidy because they were unhappy that fully audited accounts had not yet been provided for previous years and because of concerns the Mela was becoming too much of a commercial venture.

The man behind the Mela of course is our old friend, Shiraj Haque…Lutfur Rahman’s backer. He lost control of it in 2007 following a damning audit report commissioned by then council chief executive Martin Smith (would he ever return??) and then leader Denise Jones. After Lutfur became Mayor, Shiraj was able to take charge again (with the blessing of Stephen Halsey).

In the past couple of years, the trust/charity that runs the Mela (let’s see if the Charity Commission have a closer look at that arrangement) had more luck with its grant applications. In 2012, Lutfur gave it £180,000, in 2013 £170,000 and last year £100,000. The latter two amounts came from the infamous £954k slush fund identified by the PwC auditors last year.

The Commissioners will no doubt be blamed by some if as a result the Mela trust falls into the red, but good for them for being tough. Senior officers should have had more balls in the past.

The Mela is a great event and it’s right that it’s given the use of Victoria Park for free (a cost worth £25,000). The problem is with the people running it. I’m sure it’s not just me who’d like to see a full forensic audit carried out. Perhaps the council should just run it entirely again. After all, Sir Robin Wales runs a successful Mayor’s Day in Newham every year.

Meanwhile, the council continues to deflect any questions over scrutiny.

Here’s a Freedom of Information request that I asked on this earlier this year.

FOI 11843 Boishakhi Mela 

Please supply all documentation, but primarily third party invoices, provided by the trust responsible for the Boishakhi Mela to support /justify its receipt of council money. I’d also like to see the trust’s detailed accounts. This request relates to four years: 2011-14. For example, in the case of the security company used for Mela, I’d like to see all invoices submitted by the hired contractor. I’d like to see the results of any council post-audit of its grants to the mela for each of those years. 

Response 

In 2011 the Mela was run by the council and there is therefore no trust involved or information falling under the scope of this request. 

For 2012 and 2013, invoices are held by externally commissioned auditors and we have asked for these to be provided to us. I will contact you once they are received. The invoices for 2014 are not yet collected. 

The audit report for 2012 has been completed and is held by the Council However the Council is of the view that this is exempt from disclosure under section 41 of the FOI Act 2000, as information provided in confidence. The audit report disclosure would constitute a breach of confidence actionable by the author of that information. The Terms of Business under which the report was commissioned stipulate that that the report is confidential and for the exclusive use [of the Council] and must be used solely, for the purpose described in the Engagement Letter. Disclosure of the audit report would, therefore, constitute an actionable breach of confidence and the Council could be subject to claim for breach of contract as such. Section 41 is an absolute exemption. 

It is also considered that section 40(2) would also be applicable to parts of the audit report as it contains personal data. 

The requested information is (or contains) the personal data of other people. Section 40(2) of the Freedom of Information Act sets out an exemption for third party data if disclosure of the information to a member of the public otherwise than under FOIA would contravene any of the data protection principles. 

The first data protection principles states that we can only disclose the personal data if to do so would be fair, lawful and meet one of the conditions in Schedule 2 of the DPA. 

This means that, if the disclosure would not be fair, the information must not be disclosed. It is considered that the provision of this information would not be fair as the person it relates to would not expect the information to be released in this way. This is an absolute exemption and the information cannot be provided to you. 

Furthermore, the Council is of the view that it’s disclose is also exempt under Section 43 as its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests of the Trust, auditors and the Council. This is because the report contains detailed information relating to the governance structure and accounting/banking arrangements of the Trust. It could, in our opinion, be prejudicial to the Trust’s commercial interests if this information was disclosed to a third party. Appendix 2 to the Report contains the Auditors Engagement Letter and thus sets out the confidential terms on which they agreed to perform the services for the Council. It contains details of the fee, engagement team and other terms of engagement. Such information is commercially sensitive and in the hands of a competitor is likely to cause prejudice in terms of tendering for future work. 

This is a qualified exemption, and in considering the Public Interest the Council has weighed up the factor in favour of disclosure which are: 

• further the understanding of, and participation in the debate of issues of the day; 

• facilitate the accountability and transparency of public authorities for decisions taken by them; 

• allow individuals to understand decisions made by public authorities affecting their lives and, in some cases, assist individuals in challenging those decisions; 

On the other hand, the council has considered 

* the impact on the commercial interest of Trust, auditors and the Council 

* the need to obtain value for money which is likely to be compromised by disclosure 

* the audit offers scrutiny and accountability to the process in accordance with the contract 

I am sorry but based on these three exemptions we are unable to disclose the information requested 

The 2013 audit is yet to be completed and the 2014 audit has not yet commenced. 

The Trusts detailed accounts are not held by the Council and are the property of the Trust. You can access their published accounts at Companies House 

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east end life

Bundles of East End Life left in the rain at the Bow distribution depot in 2012 (copyright Ted Jeory)

Is the end in sight for East End Life? It’s been predicted many times before.

But last Friday, Eric Pickles’s Department for Communities and Local Government quietly announced its latest move against 11 councils which continue to publish freesheets more regularly than the Government would like.

Not surprisingly, Tower Hamlets council’s weekly version–which has been the prototype for so many others, which costs far more than the council claims, and which drains vital funds from frontline services–is one of the top targets.

Ministers have given the council until October 9 to respond to their demands the paper should be published no more than four times a year. After that, the department will consider legal action.

Let’s quietly note that the deadline comes the week before Eric Pickles is due to stand up in the Commons and announce the outcome of, and any action arising from, the PwC report into ‘best value’ spending at Mulberry Place. East End Life was part of PwC’s remit.

The letter sent out by DCLG last week is scathing. It says Tower Hamlets is failing to abide by the local government Publicity Code. The council strongly contests this and claims East End Life is popular and serves a public interest. The council says EEL reaches hard-to-reach groups.

DCLG, on the other hand, maintains there are other ways of communicating with such groups and notes the council’s own boasts that broadband access in the borough has risen to 85 per cent.

The government also wants a “flourishing…independent and politically free local media” and argues East End Life works against that. It effectively says East End Life is biased towards Mayor Lutfur Rahman (as it was to the former Labour administration until October 2010).

It says other councils manage perfectly well with quarterly news-sheets, and were there to be any special circumstances in Tower Hamlets, these would justify no more than a couple of extra “special editions” in any year.

The London boroughs of Enfield, Greenwich, Hackney, Hillingdon, Lambeth, Newham and Waltham Forest, as well as Luton, Medway and North Somerset councils have received similar letters.

This is what Local Minister Kris Hopkins says:

Frequent town hall freesheets are not only a waste of taxpayers’ money but they undermine the free press. Localism needs robust and independent scrutiny by the press and public.

Councillors and political parties are free to campaign and put out political literature but they should not do so using taxpayers’ money.

This is the eleventh hour for 11 councils who we consider are clearly flouting the Publicity Code. They have all now been given written notice that we are prepared to take further action, should it be necessary, against any council that undermines local democracy – whatever the political colour.

And here are some extracts of the letter to Tower Hamlets council, the full copy of which I’ve attached below:

The basis of the Secretary of State’s proposal 

Information available to the Secretary of State indicates that the London Borough of Tower Hamlets does not attach sufficient importance to ensuring the lawfulness of its publicity. In January 2013 Ofcom concluded that an advertisement, showing the Mayor associated with the house building programme in the borough, was a political advertisement rather than a public service announcement and so breached section 321(3)(g) of the Communications Act 2003 and the UK Code of Broadcast Advertising. The Secretary of State is not aware of any subsequent acceptance by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets of the unlawfulness of this publicity or any firm public commitment of the Council to ensure the lawfulness of all its future publicity and accordingly is proposing the Direction above in relation to the specified provision on lawfulness. 

The balance which, with the approval of Parliament, the Publicity Code strikes is that the newssheets etc. of principal local authorities should be published no more frequently than quarterly. Moreover the Secretary of State recognises that the great majority of councils already publish their newssheets no more frequently than quarterly, notwithstanding the wide range of groups that display protected characteristics in the areas of many councils. 

Officials from the London Borough of Tower Hamlets wrote to the Secretary of State arguing that following a review of ‘East End Life’ in 2011, the publication was redesigned, TV listings were removed and the publication was made shorter. They also argue that ‘East End Life’ is the most cost effective solution as the weekly publication aims to run on a net-nil budget.

The Council notes that cost effectiveness in one of the seven principles in the Publicity Code, and that advice taken by the Council in 2011 and a finding by the then District Auditor indicated that the decision to proceed with weekly publication was lawful and justified having regard to the provisions of the Publicity Code. The Secretary of State’s provisional view is that these arguments do not sufficiently outweigh the case for as far as practicable maintaining an environment as conducive as possible to the flourishing of an independent and politically free local media, which is an essential element of any effectively operating local democracy. 

The London Borough of Tower Hamlets has not drawn to the Secretary of State’s attention any other special circumstances that could justify a departure from the frequency recommendations of the Publicity Code nor is the Secretary of State aware of such circumstances. Moreover, in any event, the Secretary of State considers it likely that were there to be any such circumstances, these would only justify one or two extra ‘special’ editions each year.

Public sector equality duty 

In considering the impact of any direction on the London Borough of Tower Hamlets’ public sector equality duty, the Secretary of State has noted that the Council consider that a printed weekly newsletter is “particularly important amongst those seeking work, older white residents and BME residents”.

The Council also state that there is reliance upon ‘East End Life’ by “key demographic subgroups in the Council’s area which, if there was no weekly publication, would otherwise have limited access to relevant information”. The Secretary of State also notes that the Council state that broadband access in Tower Hamlets has increased to 85 per cent and that the Council “would willingly negotiate a manageable timescale for transition to digital delivery”. 

The Secretary of State recognises it may be the case, as the London Borough of Tower Hamlets have commented, that some groups in the community that display particular protected characteristics, such as age, disability or religion/belief will less readily be able to obtain the information currently circulated in ‘East End Life’ and hence all other things being equal could be adversely impacted.

However, the Secretary of State believes that it is open to a council having such protected groups to effectively communicate as necessary with them about the services and other matters which are the responsibility of the council without publishing newssheets more frequently than quarterly.

The Secretary of State recognises that the great majority of councils already publish their newssheets no more frequently than quarterly, notwithstanding the wide range of groups that display protected characteristics in the areas of many councils.

Moreover, even if there is an adverse impact the Secretary of State’s provisional view is that the proposed Direction would be justified because of the Government’s overriding policy of maintaining across the whole country an environment that is conducive as possible to the flourishing of the independent and politically free local media. Such media is an essential element of any effectively operating local democracy and hence the pursuit of this policy is a high priority.

DCLG explains that publicity by local authorities should:

  • be lawful
  • be cost effective
  • be objective
  • be even-handed
  • be appropriate
  • have regard to equality and diversity
  • be issued with care during periods of heightened sensitivity

It does not inhibit publicity produced by political parties or councillors at their own expense.

And it says, “On appropriate publicity the Code states that:

Where local authorities do commission or publish newsletters, news-sheets or similar communications, they should not issue them more frequently than quarterly, apart from parish councils which should not issue them more frequently than monthly.

Here’s the DCLG letter to the council’s head of paid service, Steve Halsey.

And here are some more pictures of council waste:

East End Life

Copyright Ted Jeory

East End Life

Copyright Ted Jeory

East End Life

Copyright Ted Jeory

East End Life

Copyright Ted Jeory

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A parking warden claimed Councillor Anwar Khan threatened to fetch a machete and kill him during a row over a double yellow line infringement.

On the other hand, Anwar says he was the one fearing for his life after the warden had threatened him with that old East End promise of “I know where you live”.

Anwar says the warden is lying. I tend to believe him; he says he doesn’t even own a machete. After all, he’s an accountant, not a butcher.

But although this is all just normal knockabout stuff for Tower Hamlets politics, this incident in Spitalfields last June has a bit more significance to it.

This was the row that played a large part in the de-selection of Bow West councillor Anwar Khan from the Labour slate for May’s elections. It became the subject of a council investigation (as yet unresolved, as far as I understand) which was brought to the attention of Labour’s interviewing panel via Cllr Carlo Gibbs, the Tower Hamlets chief whip and now Anwar’s chief enemy.

The dispute was used a further evidence that Anwar–who, as the group’s previous chief whip, last year dragged Abdal Ullah back into the council chamber during a crucial budget vote–had an attitude problem.

After a series of interviews he was deselected in favour of his sister-in-law Asma Begum, a decision he didn’t really like.

He decided to take revenge clear his name and has set about accusing the Tower Hamlets Labour party of a form of institutional racism. I reported here that he thinks John Biggs is a control freak who doesn’t like clever and outspoken Bengalis like him, that old John Biggs likes his Bengalis Uncle Tom style–yes sir, no sir, three bags full stir.

Which I think is a bit bollocks really, but that strain of thought is genuinely out there.

Whatever the truth, Anwar is currently a Very Angry Man. And after he was sacked from Labour’s front bench, he issued this press statement last week:

Cllr Khan responded to Labour Leaders claims that the allegations of a stitch up was baseless, Khan said: “What more proof do you need the emails were black and white? I spoke out and was sacked and silenced. John Biggs rules the Labour councillors with an iron fist and the Group leader Sirajul Islam is just a puppet who’s there for the diversity shot.”

Khan has served as councillor for Bow West ward, alongside Joshua Peck and Ann Jackson, since 2010, and spent three years as the party’s Chief Whip as well as 3 years as Shadow Employment Spokesman. His deselection and demotion appear to stem from a bitter feud with Carlo Gibbs, councilor for St Peters and protégé of Labour Mayoral candidate John Biggs.

Gibbs succeeded Khan as Chief Whip and was responsible for preparing reports on each prospective candidate. It is understood that Mr Gibbs is now under official investigation himself after allegations of dishonesty.

Cllr Khan said: “I’m a proud member of the Labour party but in Tower Hamlets the culture of dodgy dossiers and secret trials is destroying the party – not just in Tower Hamlets, but in Harrow, Hackney and anywhere there’s a large ethnic minority population. Just a few weeks ago, Biggs wrote to me to say I was one of the ‘sharpest’
minds in Labour Group. Now I’ve been deselected and demoted for speaking out.” This is hypocrisy.

Cllr Khan also revealed the extent of divisions in the Labour Group: “Biggs has surrounded himself with bullies and double-dealers and sitting councillors are increasingly worried about their seats.”

Cllr Khan also confirmed that John Biggs had taken image and presentation advice from him on a number of occasions after concerns were raised about the Mayoral candidate’s personal manner: “John has some interpersonal and presentational issues and I’ve advised him in the past on how to talk to people from diverse communities without alienating them. Clearly some of those lessons haven’t sunk in.”

I love the bit about John seeking “presentational advice”. From Anwar.

Which brings us back to High Noon in Spitalfields.

What follows is a lengthy transcript of Anwar’s interview with the council’s “independent” investigator, known here as MD. He’s a council officer.

You’ll see from the account that Anwar had partially parked on a double yellow as he dropped off his family in Spitafileds. He had left the engine running and says he had asked the warden for a few seconds while he tended to his child.

The warden apparently said ‘Computer says No’, Anwar said ‘Don’t you know I’m a councillor’, the warden said ‘I don’t care if you’re the Prime Minister’, Anwar said ‘I’m going to call Head of Paid Service Steve Halsey to tell him you need some customer service training and you might lose your job,’ and the warden then got a bit angry, allegedly.

I don’t have the warden’s version, but if Anwar’s is a fair account of what happened, then, although he might have been a bit high handed with his ‘I’m a councillor’ retort, I reckon sympathies might well lie with him.

All this is playing into Lutfur’s hands of course. He thinks he was the victim of a similar injustice by the Labour party. And that he never did anything wrong…

But for the avoidance of doubt, Anwar says there is no way he will defect or help Lutfur. Although he doesn’t deny Lutfur’s people are helping him drive a machete into Labour’s heart right now.

Here’s the transcript for your amusement.

Date 16/07/13
Time: 19:12-20:15

Investigation into a complaint made against Civil Enforcement Officer THxxx by Cllr Anwar Khan.

Process: MD explained that he was appointed by Mirsad Balokavic Head of Parking Services to carry out an investigation in to an alleged incident 20th June 2013. AK questioned whether MD believed that he was under pressure from his Service Head, Mr Jamie Blake. MD claimed this was not the case. AK reassured MD that he has taken steps to ensure the allegations made by Mr. Blake have been actioned and prior to the meeting, the Head of Paid Service confirmed that Mr. Blake will no longer play any part in this investigation due to the perceived interest he has. AK advised MD of the steps he should take if he feels threatened by Mr.Blake and should disregard his email not to seek any further information from AK.

Background: MD explained the context of his role as an independent investigator and gave Cllr Anwar Khan a brief on a number of investigations carried out in the past. AK reassured MD that he should not feel pressurised by the unorthodox intervention by his Service Head and that matter has been dealt with and the person removed. The reason for removal AK explained was due to breach of constitution by the officer.

MD:​ When you arrived into Casson Streetwas the CEO already there?

AK​: I parked up in front of my house I could see CEO through my windscreen. In the meantime, I unbuckled my son and held him in arms, I waited for CEO to approach, when CEO approached I asked him for some time (30sec) to drop son in to house which was approx less the 2 meters from the car. I asked him very politely and believed it was acceptable for such interaction with officers. the CEO’s tone was angry, he seemed annoyed at being asked a question. The CEO said “no you have no time and will have to move immediately or get a ticket”.

AK and his family were petrified at the response, AK states that he was confused that the officer was not following policy, as he states that there is allowance of 5 minute observation time. AK could not understand why the CEO was so angry. AK states had the CEO been honest and forthcoming providing accurate advise the altercation would not have arose. AK states that he believes that is the root cause of the matter, had the CEO followed the training he received training on customer services, then this situation would have been avoided. He questioned the officers ability to communicate clearly and felt that the officer should not performing a front line role if he cannot communicate. AK also commented that the officer presented an immediate risk to health and safety to the public and should be removed from duty. AK continues to worry about his safety, and states that he has not received the risk assessment Taft has been done and any written confirmation of what has been done to ensure his safety.

MD: ​You state that you were in the process of helping your family out of the Vehicle was the car was empty at the time the CEO arrived?

AK: ​My son was in the car seat, he was asleep, I was in the process of getting my son out of the car seat, the engine was still running, I requested for 30 seconds to drop son off. The CEO said no you must move your car now. AK asked politely and was shocked at the response. He was mortified that an officer could be so rude. The CEO’s response was “I will do what my job says, I don’t care if you are the Prime Minister, I will still put a ticket now unless you move it”.

AK said that he worked for the council and understood the councils observation policy and said that he will raise the matter with the Head of Paid Service that the CEO was not complying with policy. AK was very disappointed with the service that tax payers were receiving.

MD:​ Where were you when you first noticed the CEO?

AK: ​I was on site by my car waiting for CEO to arrive so I could speak to him. I asked the CEO politely if he could allow 30 seconds. The CEO asked me to move or I will get a ticket and started to make notes in his Pocket Book, I told him I need to take my son in to house, I left my son with family members at the door step and came back to move my car and park correctly.

MD: ​You state that your vehicle was half in the bay with the rear wheels on the double yellow line. Could you perhaps be mistaken of the position of your car?

AK: ​My car was half in bay and half on DYL, I made a genuine attempt to park correctlyin bay and managed to get 75% of the carin the bay. AK states that it was genuine attempt to park the car, as a responsible driver he assessed the corner and believed it was adequate for emergency vehicles to pass through.

MD: ​Why was your engine still running if you could get no further into the bay?

AK: ​Because I was planning to move into another bay after dropping family members off. It was going to be a 30 second process – to literally walk 5 meters to put my son to bed and return to park try car.

AK added when during peak times, there is a shortage of parking, he has an arrangement with a friend who has a driveway off Buxton Street. There was no intention for his car to be left there for longer than 30 seconds, probably less. AK added, in his 12 year driving career he has only had received 2 tickets.

MD: ​Once you had dropped your son off inside the house and returned to your car did you say anything to the CEO?

AK: ​Yes I said I will call the council to speak Steve Halsey to clarify the policy. I asked the CEO for his name and Number herefused. I had to catch sight of his number as he was walking away towards Chicksand street.

MD: ​Did you say “you can’t issue me with a ticket? If you try it I will show you. You don’t know who I am I will make sure you lose your job”.

AK​: No, I said I know council very well andas a Labour Cllr I will never say something like that. I know very well the council policy is 5 minutes Observation time. There were no red line or kerb marks which I know is a different policy.

AK added that the CEO made comments, “I don’t care who you are, even if you are prime minister you will get a ticket”, AK was in the process of making a all to Mr. Halsey and at no point made those comments.

MD: ​What did you say to the CEO when he slammed the door against you? What was your reaction?

AK​: I was shocked and astonished; therewere scaffolding on street between him and my car. I did not think CEO will conduct himself so badly. He challenged me to put a report in to the council and that he will fight it all the way. He said he has been doing the job for 20 years andnobody has ever reported him for this kind of stuff.

MD:​ Was there any injuries sustained and if so did you seek medical attention?

AK had to rest for several days. He did not require to take time off work as he was on annual leave.

MD: ​At the time that the officer slammed the door against your arm and shoulder, you state that the car directly in front of you moved away. Did the driver of the car in front witness any of this incident?

AK:​ He must have as he was walking to thecar; there were two members of public

MD​: Why did he not assist you?

AK: ​I did not know the driver of car. There was nothing to assist even though the officer was violent and threatening – however people expect such violence from CEO’s.

MD: ​When the officer said to you “Come here tomorrow, I will kill you” were there any witnesses to this?

AK: ​CEO was on opposite side of the street my wife and mum were witness. Somalian woman who I saw next day said that she heard a parking attendant shouting although she could not hear what was said.

AK states that his wife and mother witnessed this. They were all frightened and required additional security measures applied to the property to ensure the officer cannot return.

MD: ​Did the police take statements from these witnesses?

AK​: There was no witness at the time I saw a Somalian lady the next day.

MD:​ Did the police take a statement from your wife?

AK: ​No she had gone out. They also did not ask, otherwise she would have been happy to do so.

MD:​ The officer states that you got into your car and moved it back approximately 12 inches and said “See I told you, you can’t do me”

AK:​ No, because he could have still given me a ticket if he wanted. I didn’t say anything like that. I had to move my vehicle to let other car out. The officer is desperate to make anything seem like a material point, there is nothing contradictory to the Highway Code for reversing to allow another vehicle pass. This is a nonsense point.

MD:​ Where were you when the police turned up?

AK: ​I was across the road trying to get CEO Name & Number while I was waiting for police.

MD:​ The police told you the Civil Enforcement Officer had made a counter allegation. Do you know what that was?

AK: ​Something like I was going to get a machete to kill him, this allegation was made after police informed him I made an allegation.

MD: ​Do you have a CAD or incident number from the police?

AK: ​Yes in I have it in the Car. Can you tell me what the number is? I no longer have this. Anyway this is not a matter for public perusal.

MD: ​Have you contacted the police regarding their investigation?

AK: ​No they sent email to stating not enough evidence to pursue the case. Could I possibly have a copy of the email?

M:D ​There was no mention of any witnesses in the statement made on the day to THEO THxxx

AK: ​Other than family

MD:​ You supplied the names of some witnesses and you mentioned that there was a plain cloths police officer attending to a domestic. Do you know why this officer did not intervene at the time this incident took place?

AK: ​He did not see the incident he only saw tail end of me requesting name & Number from the CEO. He didn’t give name or number so I followed him to Chicksand Street.

MD: ​Did you have conversation with Member of Public who had just received a ticket from this officer.

AK: ​No

MD: ​How did you know he was a plain cloths police officer and did you manage to get his name?

AK: he showed his card to the officers who came to restrain the violent officer. Note that the officer was running away from the incident when they arrived, police had to shout after him and run after him.

The above statement is true and made to the best of my knowledge and belief.

Signed ………………………………..Date…………………..


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