Political disaffection: Integrity is key

Ballot box
Ballot box

I, like Councillor Shields (Chad 19 February 2014), am concerned about the low turnouts that characterise local elections and the growing disaffection with politicians generally.

I don’t agree however with his suggestion that it is political one-upmanship and lack of teamwork that turns voters off.

I think people have grown to distrust politicians who say one thing to get into office then break their promises when in power.

I was once in a team with Councillor Shields.

That team was the Labour candidates who stood for election in May 2011.

We were both elected as Labour councillors due to the efforts of Labour Party members who did all the footwork of talking to voters and delivering leaflets.

Not to mention us benefiting from the finance raised by party members to pay for literature to get our message across.

In short we both benefited from the sort of political machine that he now decries.

Once in office, Councillor Shields chose to leave our team, and receive additional allowances by serving in the Mayor’s cabinet.

For those thirty pieces of silver he betrayed all those who voted for him as a Labour candidate.

He didn’t resign as a councillor and stand in his own right in a by-election.

That would have been the honourable thing to do.

Councillor Paul Henshaw

Via email

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