8 November 2011

The curious case of the Coombe Vale by-election...

Last week Coombe Vale Ward in Kingston Borough had three Conservative councillors. Then one was exposed by the local paper - the wonderfully named Surrey Comet - for working full time in the USA and not attending any council meetings since 14th July. Yet Cllr Tasker still found time to claim £2,500 allowances from the taxpayer.

But instead of taking action - the Tories backed errant councillor Tasker explaining 'he had been carrying out constituency work while he was away, via email and telephone.' That was 8am on Friday 28th October.

By 5.11pm on Tuesday 1st November the paper reported he'd resigned.

Their report said a Conservative spokesman refused to confirm the resignation of Counc Tasker, but the councillor’s photograph and contact details have now been removed from the council website.

Well that seemed to be that then - a botched resignation for a politician whose position had become untenable.

However that wasn't that and on Monday afternoon a second Conservative councillor - James Whyte - in the same ward mysteriously resigned.

There will now be a double by-election for their replacements on 15th December. That is assuming there are no more resignations in the next few days. And one can only sympathise with Coombe Vale voters who may just wonder what exactly is going on behind the scenes in Kingston Conservatives that have lead to this bizarre turn of events.

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