Protestors blast Havering Councillors for ‘betraying the voters’ by backing borough’s Conservatives after being elected for other parties
- Credit: Archant
A group of residents held aloft placards and chanted “Tories out” outside Havering Town Hall last night (May 24) amid claims some independent councillors were “betraying voters” by propping up a new Conservative administration.
The demonstration was organised in the wake of the news that four councillors who ran in this month’s elections as independent or Residents Association candidates were backing the Conservatives to help elect Councillor Damian White as the new council leader.
Bearing banners that read “don’t betray the voters” and “vote independent, get independent”, the residents were there to express their discontent at what one described as “the dirty and underhand tactics” that had been at work behind the scenes since the Conservatives failed to win an overall majority on May 3.
During the meeting, South Hornchurch councillor Michael Deon-Burton, who was elected as an independent candidate in South Hornchurch, was revealed to have joined the Conservative group, and was named deputy mayor.
Cllr Deon-Burton was elected with 1,312 votes in his ward, the second highest share – the nearest Conservative candidate only won 634, coming behind all three Labour nominees and the two other Independent Residents Group councillors who won seats.
You may also want to watch:
Sue Ospreay, who ran as an independent candidate herself in Rainham & Wennington and missed out on a seat on the council by just 68 votes, described Cllr Deon-Burton’s actions as “unforgivable”.
She said: “It’s like being selected for the England football team and then playing for France, it’s a joke.
- 1 How did your Havering GP surgery score in NHS patient survey?
- 2 Four-car crash in Havering-atte-Bower reignites calls for 20mph speed limit
- 3 Free swimming for schoolchildren in Havering launched ahead of Olympics
- 4 Secondary schools in Havering rated outstanding by Ofsted
- 5 Romford drama students to feature alongside celebrities in new WW2 film
- 6 10-storey block expansion of 700-home development in Rainham gets go-ahead
- 7 Dagenham seal comfortable win over Hornchurch in pre-season
- 8 New Home Bargains store to open in Romford
- 9 Havering residents warned of weed which can cause ‘severe blistering’
- 10 Primary schools in Havering rated outstanding by Ofsted
“These councillors complain about low turnout at elections and then wonder why, and it’s because people don’t believe in politics when things like this go on.”
Another protester told the Recorder: “If he’s now a Tory then surely he should have to stand for re-election as a Tory?
“The people of South Hornchurch did not vote for the Conservatives, so now [Cllr Deon-Burton] should do the right thing, stand down and run a new election to let people be represented by the party they voted for.”
Cllr Deon-Burton has been approached for comment.