I wrote on Tuesday about the antics at the area committee that morning, here. This was the follow on from the disgraceful behaviour of the administration on Thursday last, read here.
On Tuesday when I got home, I wrote to Cllrs Walsh and Scoullar as shown below. They haven’t replied and I think they’ll try their usual trick when asked awkward questions, ie kidding on the questions were never asked. I have asked them both again this morning but don’t hold your breath. The question is this: what exactly did they say to reverse the chairman’s decision? Of course, if the chairman had any backbone he would have told them both to get lost.
I am copying all councillors into this query to Cllrs Walsh and Scoullar about the goings on at the start of today’s Bute & Cowal Area Committee for reasons that will be clear.
Cllr Robert MacIntyre, the ousted chair of the area committee, went up to his replacement Cllr Alex McNaughton before the meeting started and asked if he could make a statement at the start of the meeting. The officer from governance and law was beside Cllr McNaughton and must have heard the request. He would also have heard the answer from Cllr McNaughton which was, quite sensibly, that Cllr MacIntyre could indeed make a statement.
Some five minutes later Cllrs Walsh and Scoullar had a conversation with Cllr McNaughton and the officer, in hushed tones but not hushed enough that others around them heard the word “statement”, so it is improbable that they were discussing anything other than the approved request that Cllr MacIntyre could make his statement.
Then, after the huddle dispersed, Cllr MacIntyre was told that he could not make his statement after all.
So, the questions for Cllrs Walsh and Scoullar are as follows:
- What did you say in your conversation that made both the chair and the officer change their minds?
- What were your motives in asking/telling/persuading them to change their minds?
- Cllr Scoullar has some role here as vice chair of the area committee but you Cllr Walsh have no role whatsoever so why were you involved please?
I look forward to hearing from you both.
I witnessed this on Tuesday past. I went with my husband Cllr Breslin to the meeting. I saw both Cllr McNaughton and the official nod their heads in agreement to Cllr MacIntyre’s request to make a statement. There was no doubt both gave their agreement to this.
The mystery is what Cllrs Walsh and Scoular said that made them both then refuse the request. I could not understand the long winded explanation from the official as to why no statement could be made. He seemed to be making up his reasons as he went along but he can’t be blamed. I think he was got at by Walsh and Scoular.
What is the legal position here? May be time to involve police? Scotland’s worst council!!!
They thrive on folk’s silence and embarrassment. Do nothing and nothing changes, so all those councillors who just sit back should think about their responsibilities.
Media coverage is very powerful, so in the meantime just keep publishing.
Attended a workshop on how to improve local democracy held at the Scottish Rural Parliament in Brechin. Participants the length and breadth of Scotland referred to Argyll and Bute as the most dysfunctional local authority in the country. We are a national embarrassment !
I am shamed to say we are Duncan. The only people who can act to stop this embarrassment are Audit Scotland but so far they have not seen fit to do so. You might be interested to know that Isobel Strong and Robert MacIntyre both asked if the decision not to allow Robert to speak would be minuted. They said no to that too.