Fringe Box



Letter: Some Crimes Should Bar Political Office

Published on: 11 Mar, 2016
Updated on: 11 Mar, 2016

GBC petitionFrom Anna-Marie Davis

Whether criminality should prevent political office is an interesting one, I think it should relate to the crime in question.

My personal opinion is that lying to the electorate and lying to borough councils to secure employment at a [qualified] lawyer’s rate shows considerable disrespect for the public purse and should result in a ban. Whether people should be paid to collect signatures is also morally, if not legally, dubious.

Before a referendum is held, the Terms of Reference for the position of [Elected] Mayor should be drafted to enable the public to see what they are voting on and precisely which powers the postholder could exercise, and the checks and balances that would be imposed as a safety check.

Of course, were Stephen Mansbridge to decide to stand and was subsequently elected, he would not be able to determine, or partake in, decisions relating to any applications relating to the sponsors of this petition given his clear conflict of interests.

Fundamental aspects of good governance should not be compromised nor circumnavigated through the elected mayor model, and I will be keen to review the governance provisions in advance of any potential referendum.

It should be noted that Monika Juneja, the organiser of the “Elected Mayor Petition” is not, herself, believed to be seeking political office. Ed

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Responses to Letter: Some Crimes Should Bar Political Office

  1. Allen Johnson Reply

    March 12, 2016 at 8:21 am


    I am unconcerned with types of crime or excuses; they are irrelevant. Some of the characters that occupy political positions of power with clear conflicts of interest are bad enough. So why open the door to those who have been convicted?

  2. Dave Middleton Reply

    March 13, 2016 at 6:30 pm

    From the Electoral Commission website:

    “You are disqualified from becoming a Local Councillor if:

    “You have been sentenced to a term of imprisonment of three months or more (including a suspended sentence), without the option of a fine, during the five years before polling day.”

    I presume that restriction would also apply to any mayoral candidate?

    There has been no indication, we are aware of, that Ms Juneja, herself, intends to stand as a mayoral candidate, should a referendum succeed. Ed.

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