Barnet bloggers call for independent inquiry into alleged constitutional breach

During June meeting of the Budget, Performance, Overview and Scrutiny Committee Cllr. Anthony Finn, the Chair, inform the world that “the purpose of scrutiny is not to criticise, but to make a positive contribution.”  

But apparently, Cllr Finn quibbling turned to be a serious issue, when the disgraced ex-Tory cllr. Coleman revealed in the full council meeting last week that there is no scrutiny in Barnet Council, and that the Councillors are whipped into obedience especially when it come to the One Barnet programme.

Barnet bloggers published an open letter calling for investigation into Cllr. Coleman’s allegations. You can read the letter below and watch the video of the Council meeting.



Were Barnet’s Tory councillors secretly whipped? Barnet bloggers call for an investigation.

At Barnet Council’s full council meeting on 16 July, Councillor Brian Coleman alleged that Barnet’s Conservative members are ‘entirely whipped’ when attending scrutiny and other Council meetings, including those dealing with the highly controversial One Barnet privatisation programme.According to the Council’s constitution, any whipping arrangements must be declared, but we believe that no such declarations have been made at any of the relevant recent meetings. Such actions would be in breach of the constitution and therefore unlawful.

If Councillor Coleman’s allegations are true, this clearly has very serious implications and casts into doubt the legality of many of the highly significant decisions which have been taken by the current administration, most importantly the decision to grant two massive contracts to Capita and Capita Symonds in the outsourcing of a large number of our local council services.

We therefore call on the Leader of the council, Councillor Richard Cornelius, to instigate an immediate and independent public inquiry into the claims made by his former colleague, and we also ask that the authority’s external auditors at Grant Thornton should as a matter of public interest hold an urgent inquiry into the allegations.

Residents need to know whether decisions have been made legally and whether Tory councillors have acted constitutionally.


Derek Dishman
John Dix
Vicki Morris
Theresa Musgrove
Roger Tichborne

19 July 2013



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