July 8 2008

I have been very busy this week and the column has had to play second fiddle.
However, I must comment on a letter in the Mercury from Cllr Ken Rowlands in which he defends his decision to leave Labour and, subsequently, join the Independent Political group.
The two interesting questions about his defection are: when did he decide to jump ship and was his decision influenced by the prospect/promise of a Cabinet post.
Cllr Rowlands maintains there is no connection between the 13 grand special Responsibility Allowance (SRA) and his defection and, as I've said before, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, we just have to believe him.
After all, he is a Baptist preacher.,
On the matter of the timing of his decision Cllr Rowlands wrote: "When I stood as an independent in my own name I was entering uncharted territory not knowing what path I would follow if I was successful at the election".
What this is meant to suggest is that he went into the election as an independent independent (in my own name) and only subsequently decided to sign up to the IPG.
When I read that, my doubts about publishing the letter written by his fellow Johnston community councillor, Angie Newman, evaporated.
Because, according to Mrs Newman: "You [Ken Rowlands] told me of your intention to join the Independent Group and because of that I did not vote for you, but I had a choice based on information that was not made available to the majority of the residents of Johnston."
Clearly, if the way Mrs Newman voted was influenced by Cllr Rowlands' intention to join the IPG, that knowledge must have come into her possession before the election.
As Aristotle taught us, two contradictory propositions can't both be true.
So you will have to decide who to believe.

I hope to further update overnight.


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