Fringe Box



Letter: Juneja – The Whole Story Is Worse

Published on: 9 Jul, 2015
Updated on: 9 Jul, 2015

MJ Old BaileyFrom Ben Paton

Ms Juneja was confronted with her conduct long before the police were involved. She had every opportunity to set the record straight then and to apologise then. Decent people admit their mistakes.

Instead she threatened to sue at least one of the complainants. Then she proceeded, yet again, to forge documents to support her claims and present them to the independent investigator appointed by Guildford Borough Council, while she was a lead councillor for planning and deputy leader of the Conservative group.

The complainants then went to the Local Government Ombudsman – in the belief that it should be concerned that Guildford’s Codes of Conduct were not respected. The ombudsman refused to investigate.

Only then, with all other avenues exhausted, did the complainants go the the police. That was their very last resort.

A correction of the record and an apology might well have satisfied them if it had been given at the outset. Instead they were blanked and stonewalled. Worse they were then subjected to accusations of racism.

The leader of the council said, in so many words, that they should mind their own business: “If you are not a victim why complain?”.

He even maintained in court that Ms Juneja was the victim of a witch hunt and that he held a lever arch files of abusive documentation. But he has failed to disclose any of his proclaimed evidence.

In short Ms Juneja behaved as if the Local Plan was her private fiefdom and the public were just a nuisance to be suitably dealt with by officialdom. Officialdom duly delivered: Dr Hooper exonerated her from any crime.

Now we know he was profoundly wrong. But we still don’t know how such a simple matter was not exposed by the council or the Conservative group in Guildford.

All that’s bad. There’s worse.

The leader of the council is still in place. And Ms Juneja is running a petition for a Tower Hamlets style mayor.

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