OK – I may not have got the most votes in Blackpool, but it doesn’t mean I’ve lost interest in the campaign in Lancashire. So I thought you’d like to hear the news about how Ibby Master, Independent member of the Police Authority and former rival of Clive Grunshaw’s for the Lancashire Labour Police and Crime Commissioner nomination, has agreed with Mr Grunshaw to become one of his Deputy PCCs if Labour are successful in the November election. The announcement of running mates in this election raises a number of issues which I have already covered here and here.
There is the small matter of the fact that Ibby’s name won’t be on the ballot paper, so he won’t be elected to the position, and that Clive’s decision to say he will appoint him rather deftly ignores the fact that any proposed appointee needs to face a hearing of Lancashire’s Police and Crime Panel, who then recommend to the Police and Crime Commissioner as to whether the appointment should be made or not. Now, fair enough, the Commissioner can ignore them, but is it really a good idea to set out as if you mean to ignore them 4 months before the election by giving the appointment as a foregone conclusion?
I know and have worked with Ibby, both in Preston and in Blackburn with Darwen. I’m glad his contribution and extensive support within the Labour party has been recognised, and I think Clive has done well to get him on board. Ibby’s website has had a makeover with the word ‘Deputy’, and Clive has issued his own announcement featuring glowing words about Ibby. I’ve already asked him on Twitter to remind us of what he said about Ibby during the selection campaign which led to him being forced by the Labour Party to apologise to him (and to fellow Labour candidate Mark Atkinson). We’ll wait to see if that is added, but I broke the news to the world about that here on TopOfTheCops.com, and for convenience you can read below the Labour Party’s email about the affair to its members:-
“I am emailing following a recent leaflet from Clive Grunshaw sent to Lancashire members. The leaflet was the cause of a number of complaints. As it contains disparaging remarks about the other two candidates both candidates have been given the opportunity to email members with a statement on the matter. These statements are below. Clive has apologised to the other two candidates and his apology has been accepted.
Anna Hutchinson Regional Director
“Negative campaigning should play no part in an internal Labour Party selection. To do so is inconsistent with the values of the Labour Party and frankly it’s not the Lancashire way.
Lancashire is where I was born and bred. It’s where I went to Primary and Secondary School. It’s where my family have lived for generations and it’s the county in which I was married. I am proud to call Lancashire my home and reject any suggestion that I am not local.
I would urge members to judge candidates on their merits rather than on the negative and inaccurate assertions that have been made.”
“I have been an active member of the Labour Party for the past 20 years and, in that time, have campaigned for many candidates in both local and national elections. I’m proud of the support that I have received in this campaign from major national Labour Party figures such as Jack Straw and Keith Vaz and this is both a clear endorsement of my contribution to the Labour Party over the years and an indication that they believe that I can win the forthcoming Lancashire Police Crime and Commissioner elections for Labour. Recently, confusing remarks have been made about my Labour Party record. This kind of behaviour is not in the spirit of an internal election. It is not fair to either the candidates or to Labour Party members who need the correct information to help them make an informed choice that will benefit the whole Labour Party by ensuring that the best candidate is chosen as its representative at the future election. I would simply ask that you judge me on my record”.