Oct 01 2013

Harrow ILG: Independent Investigation: “The Historic Insult

ilg_roseDear Editor

Independent Labour Group would like to put on record its profound sadness and extreme disappointment about the manner the Harrow Council’s constitution was arbitrarily suspended for all intents and purposes by the Tory and Labour coalition.

Like many fair minded residents and independent Councillors who came to witness ‘the historic insult’ to our constitution, when the 18 fundamental clauses of our constitution, derived from the Local Government Act 1972, were suspended to cripple the powers of the first African Mayor from continent, who also happened to be, in many years, a Christian Mayor of Harrow.

This political union of Tories and Labour in Harrow was to remove the first Sri Lankan Leader of the Council in the country came after a similar attempt only a few months ago. Cllr Thaya Idaikkadar was not given a fair chance to lead for even a year. The first challenge was made by Labour in 5 months after he was elected as the Leader and then the next by Tories after 10 months on 16 September – without a thought being spared for the residents of the Borough or the Council business needs that require stability and continuity of the sort.

[pullquote align=”right” textalign=”left|center|right” width=”30%”]…the brief period under Thaya was a success because the Council truly became a listening Council…[/pullquote]Despite the immense constant challenges and power battles, the brief period under Thaya was a success because the Council truly became a listening Council and residents views were heard, without party politics.

There was a public call made in the Council Chamber for an independent investigation. It is now critical in light of recent happenings at Harrow Council, and the manner in which the Mayor, some members of staff and Members feel that the Chief Executive set up a credible, transparent and independent investigation covering all such issues, ranging from the sanctity of constitution as well as the conduct.

Independent Labour Group Members

Cllr Thaya Idaikkadar

Cllr Asad Omar

Cllr Nana Asante

Cllr Zarina Khalid

Cllr Krishna James

Cllr Will Stoodley

Cllr Mano Dharmarajah

Cllr Nizam Ismail

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  1. All things good

    Harrow has never really had a ‘listening council’ in the true sense. When anything is wrong that will put the Council in a bad light, no Leader or Councillor can stop the might of Michael Lockwood (chief exec) and Hugh Peart (Head of legal and governance) from burying it to deflect bad press!

  2. Susan Hall

    Things have changed, if you have evidence of anything that you consider unfair then please contact me. I represent those that have elected me and to be fair those who have not. I am now receiving 200 e mails a day and some are very informative on specifics. Let me know if you have an issue and I will do my best to resolve or explain to you why we cannot resolve. You will get the truth from me whether it is what you want to hear or not – its the only way forward.

  3. 4Democracy

    Not necessarily on this issue however such a refreshing and welcome change to hear these words…..truth, explanation and a response. Actions which have been sadly lacking up until now. Good for you Susan and thank you!

  4. David

    Susan Hall appears to give a impression of being a strong Leader for now who wants bring some sense into the Harrow Council’s Civic Service top table fiefdom, let us see if she can actually deliver.

    Chief Legal Officer of Council have been known to proudly say that he is the only Officer no one can remove since he is the monitoring officer which begs the question: Who monitor the monitoring officer really? With so many long standing complaints reported by iharrow in relation to FOIs and other requests not being answered/ignored/kicked in long grass by Legal and now this.

    Can Susan Hall sort out the incompetence of Legal or is Chief Legal Officer untouchable?

  5. Jeff Andersson

    What a pathetic excuse for a party. Led by a man who could not accept losing a leadership election, who worked with and made deals with the Tories whilst claiming to be socialist, whose awarded the Leader of the third group on Harrow Council (himself) increased expenses, who led the ILG to vote for Tory control of the council,. Yet more repeats of claims of racial discrimination without a single example – the sort of person who brings politics into disrepute

  6. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodios?

  7. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    What a pathetic excuse for a party. Led by a man who refused to take my advice that a challenge would split the Harrow Labour Group, who slated and lambasted the position of non-executive cabinet member, who claimed that proved it was a coalition, who slated and lambasted the allowance that goes with that position, but now all of a sudden TAKES UP THAT POSITION but does NOT offer the second post to his deputy leader!! The sort of person who brings politics into disrepute…is he going to claim the allowance? I bet he does!

    And an extra special thanks to Mr Jeff Anderson for giving me the perfect copy-paste skeleton script with which to reply to a comment that so without doubt proves the old addage “Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones”.

  8. David

    Is this same Jeff Anderson who according to some comments have been trying for a long while to get nominated to the so called ‘safe labour seat’ without any success?

  9. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    Yes – but I don’t know anything about the safe seat bit.

  10. Harrow Cynic

    To be honest, Harrow is well rid of the joke that was the ILG administration. Their period of ‘control’ was marked by a shambolic approach and numerous u-turns.

    Additionally, it is no surprise that Harrow’s Conservative and Labour groups decided to strip the Mayor of many of her powers for the duration of the Extraordinary Council meeting on 16 September. Clearly they had no confidence that she would chair the meeting impartially in view of her ‘politicisation’ of the Mayor’s role since May 2013. Since then she joined in with the invective directed at her erstwhile colleagues in the Labour Party and put her name to the several unsubstantiated charges of institutional racism directed at Labour, the officers of the Council, etc. I know who will be next….. anyone who dares to disagree with the Independent Labour Group.

  11. David

    No wonder you are called cynic.

  12. Cllr Willy Stoodley

    Talking of cynicism, I bet this thread turns into a discussion on the stealth camera outside Harrow & Wealdstone railway station!

  13. Praxis Reform

    We could always have a discussion on how useless Bob Blackman is.

  14. All things good

    Thank you Susan Hall for replying to my post. Unfortunately I had a terrible experience with the Council which dragged on for a long time. They did everything in their power to discredit me (similar to guest poster Melanie), and why, because I highlighted areas and issues that were either failing, or not best practice. After a very long time and with some changes made, I became battle weary, and it started to affect my health.
    David who has posted above has it spot on when he says the Head of legal/monitoring officer really does believe he is untouchable, and is responsible for covering up anything that will bring the Council into disrepute. I thank you for your offer of help and will think about it. Having had my fingers seriously burned by the Council before, I am reluctant to step back into the breech. I wish you well as leader, and hope that you do not allow the Chief exec or Head of Legal dictate to you how to do your job!

  15. Cllr Willy Stoodley


  16. j p hobbs

    No WOOLY STOOLS not tonight maybe tomorrow .

  17. Peter Keeble

    What is the relevance of the former mayor of Harrow being a Christian?

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