Bid to oust North East Lincolnshire leader fails
North East Lincolnshire Council opposition councils have failed to oust the agency’s chairman, Councilor Philip Jackson, over business relationships between his former vice-chairman and a convicted fraudster.
A job motion before the agency’s full council on Thursday called for a vote of no confidence in Conservative Councilor Jackson, accusing him of failing to take decisive action or conducting an independent investigation into Councilor John Fenty’s links with convicted fraudster Alex May to have.
Councilor Fenty resigned as vice chairman in December 2020 after it was revealed that the former chairman of Grimsby Town FC invited Mr May to meet with club directors and that the convicted fraudster had also met senior council officials.
Mr May, formerly known as Alick Kapikanya, led a gang in Manchester in 2007 against elderly homeowners. He managed to steal £ 3.5 million and tried to steal another £ 3.3 million.
He was jailed for six years for his role in the fraud.
He had started a company with Councilor Fenty, but according to the latter it had never started trading and they had since split as business partners.
Labor said Councilor Jackson’s resignation “would give the council a fresh start”.
Members said that meetings with Mr. May and those present should have conducted a full conflict of interest investigation, alleging residents continued to question the events or even “laughed” in the council.
Union leader Matthew Patrick said: “Despite the welcome and much-needed resignation of Councilor Fenty from his cabinet position, the Chairman has […] who appointed Councilor Fenty despite protests from opposition members, has failed to either act decisively in the public interest over events or to do so.
“Councilor Jackson has failed to perform his duty to respect the integrity of his office, failed to meet the standards of conduct expected by residents, and has also allowed his cabinet to run the risk of violating the office’s Nolan principles.”
Workmate Councilor Debbie Rodwell said there were a number of unanswered questions and there had been no prior opportunity to raise the issue in a public forum.
She accused Councilor Jackson of avoiding questions asked at previous meetings.
“W.marriage always saying is it is Really important to Be transparent. And on This problem we feeling The the City council straight was not transparent, and the Publicity earned Answers, ”she said.
However, Councilor Jackson said the move was a “shallow pre-election political stunt”.
“If Councilor Patrick really believes that Councilor Fenty and I have failed to maintain the integrity of our respective offices or have failed to meet expected standards of conduct, then why has it taken him three months to take action when there is a procedure to do just that ? kind of a situation within the Council Constitution, ”he said.
“He failed, so he’s the one demonstrating a lack of leadership.”
He said he was satisfied that Councilor Fenty acted “conscientiously” to step down from his role, adding that no member of the public had made a formal complaint or initiated the standard process.
“This motion has long been based on innuendo rumors and allegations that have no substance.”
Councilor Jackson then listed what he viewed as a failure of his opponent’s leadership, including the Toll Bar Roundabout, childcare and alternatives to the Tory budget.
“This is a distraction from the important advances this government is making under my leadership.
He added that Councilor Patrick should instead be the one to step down.
Councilor Jackson was supported by his party, including Councilor Ron Shepherd, who said his leader had the full support of colleagues.
“Councilor Jackson leads from the front and has driven the group’s rise to the party’s administration,” he said.
Humberston and New Waltham City Councilors Stan Shreeve has been appointed as the new vice chairman of the city council following the resignation of City Councilor Fenty.
Councilor Fenty remains a councilor for Humberston and New Waltham but has previously confirmed that he does not intend to stand again in May.
Following the revelations, Grimsby Town Football Club announced that it had declined Mr May’s offer to the club.
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