It must be fairly well known by now that when Bexley council is in a deep hole it will lie like crazy,
the Cheryl Bacon affair
proved that. It also proved that they aren’t very good at it, their version of events didn’t even begin
to hang together. Inevitable I suppose when there was not a scintilla of truth in Bacon’s story.
Lying to attempt an escape from a big error of judgment is to be expected of Bexley council but it is so deeply embedded within their culture that they lie even in circumstances many people would think should be shrugged off for being too trivial and not worth the bother. A case like that has been running in parallel with the Cheryl Bacon fiasco. A case in which any intelligent person would say “it was a minor slip up, so what?” rather than indulge in unnecessary lying. Intelligence must be in short supply at the Civic Centre.
A month after councillor Bacon’s illegal Closed Session meeting there was a Full Council Meeting. Resident John Watson asked a question about councillor Colin Campbell’s notorious TV appearance in which he did little but lie and in doing so referred to this website. Colin Campbell snapped back “I don't read the crap on Bexley is Bonkers”. It was the first time I had heard the words Bexley is Bonkers uttered in the Council Chamber and whether or not Campbell thinks it is crap or not doesn’t bother me in the slightest. The object of the site is to make the dishonesty of Bexley council as widely known as possible and in passing, to annoy the hell out of the blighters.
The ‘crap’ remark was jotted down and much as I hate to show you my appalling ‘balanced on a knee’ scribble, I think I have to. Campbell’s remark went on the blog next day. What I didn’t realise until very recently is that Campbell’s four letter word provoked a complaint and a couple of months later Bexley council answered it.
I would have guessed that they would say that use of that particular ‘C’ word does not offend against any code of conduct. After all, Legal Team Manager Lynn Tyler said only six weeks ago, when excusing Campbell’s lying on TV, that prevarication (lying) by councillors is acceptable as it is not specifically prohibited by their code. Neither is use of the ’C’ word.
But I was wrong. Bexley council decided that their preferred method of rejection of the “crap” complaint was to lie.
Their excuse this time is that Campbell did not say “crap”, he said “trash”. He categorically denies using the word which rang out across the council chamber for around 100 people to hear. I might have thought mayor Sharon Massey, who chairs Full Council meetings, took a reasonable and pragmatic view if she didn’t consider Campbell’s comment offensive, but Lynn Tyler, in her usual incompetent way goes and spoils that by also claiming that mayor Massey didn’t hear it. What is it Lynn? Did Sharon hear it and was unconcerned or did the mayor not hear it at all? Lies always make a muddle, why bother with this one when there is another way out? Why is Tyler still in a job?
At least the situation with Campbell is clear. He has chosen to reinforce his reputation as the Craske replacement, Peter having been fairly subdued since his narrow escape from justice. In the true tradition of any lawyer anxious to avoid the truth, Lynn Tyler failed to ask the two people sitting closest to Campbell that evening, Teresa O’Neill and Will Tuckley. Teresa will no doubt be just as pleased with Campbell this time as she must have been with his TV appearance.
It was a bit of a storm in a teacup but it served a useful purpose. It helped prove that Bexley council only has one solution for every problem; a big fat lie.
This is probably a reasonable time to conclude another Campbell/John Watson story…
Before the General Purposes Committee meeting began a couple of weeks ago, John asked the chairman if two councillors could kindly move to one side as their position blocked the view of the other committee members. Councillor Geraldene Lucia-Hennis donned her little black moustache and said “No”. Campbell thought he should show his disdain for any member of the public, to say nothing of his true character, by changing his position to ensure the view was even better blocked.
Since then, while I was with John, a councillor whose identity should probably be protected, apologised, if that is the right word in the circumstances, for Campbell’s behaviour. The adjective used was “ridiculous”, “utterly ridiculous” if I remember correctly. So we can probably conclude that the cancer that goes to the heart of Bexley council is not universally admired from within.