Controversial Tory councillor back in the headlines again

It’s been quite a year for Robert John Fairbank Barnes. Born, brought up, educated and spending his entire career in Leeds, working for the City Council, before retiring in 2021. Twelve months ago, he was campaigning to be elected to Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council in their Chadderton South ward. A perennial failure, he had previouslyContinue reading “Controversial Tory councillor back in the headlines again”

‘Cover-up’ council urgently invited to review alleged rape safeguarding decision

Following two very recent decisions by Northern police forces to sack officers after having sexual relations with vulnerable females with whom they have had professional contact, Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council has been asked to review its decision to allow a sitting councillor accused of rape to continue to attend Full Council meetings, committee meetings andContinue reading “‘Cover-up’ council urgently invited to review alleged rape safeguarding decision”

Notorious ‘cover-up’ council sets out election ID assistance

The Government has introduced new legislation which means photographic identification will be compulsory for anyone voting in person in this year’s local elections. Voters attending polling stations on Thursday 4th May, 2023 will be refused a ballot paper if they do not show Government-approved photo ID. Accepted ID includes a passport, driving licence, concessionary busContinue reading “Notorious ‘cover-up’ council sets out election ID assistance”

‘…..the circus has a ringmaster’

Following two articles published on Neil Wilby Media over the past four days, more information has emerged over a controversial decision by beleaguered Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council to change a long-arranged start time of a meeting in favour of the possibility of a clash with a football match. The first of those two articles wasContinue reading “‘…..the circus has a ringmaster’”

Bungling Borough Solicitor blamed for Bardoc blunder

One of the biggest controversies to spill out of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council in this municipal year has been an alleged smear campaign waged against one of its most prominent and best known politicians. It has led to a flurry of legal letters and ferocious arguments waged on social media, and in the local press,Continue reading “Bungling Borough Solicitor blamed for Bardoc blunder”

‘Cover-up’ council puts up the shutters yet again

A local council that repeatedly, and falsely, claims to be open and transparent has been caught out, yet again, in a familiar sequence of ineptitude, poor decision-making, deception and cover-up. As is often the case, what started out as a relatively minor matter escalates out of all proportion simply because very highly paid senior officersContinue reading “‘Cover-up’ council puts up the shutters yet again”

LibDems raise further transparency concerns at troubled council

In a short statement released yesterday evening, Oldham’s Liberal Democrats revealed exclusively that a company run by Cllr Zahid Chauhan MBE, the Borough Council’s current Deputy Mayor, and previous Cabinet Member for Health, received 14 separate payments over 9 separate months throughout 2021/22 totalling £637,042 from Oldham Council. Prior to the month of each payment,Continue reading “LibDems raise further transparency concerns at troubled council”

Will controversy again dog council meeting this evening?

The latest in a long running series of controversial Full Council meetings of Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council takes place this evening (2nd November, 2022) at the town’s Civic Centre this evening. A report from the last renewal on 7th September, 2022 can be read here. Talking points are likely to be headed by the ‘willContinue reading “Will controversy again dog council meeting this evening?”

Councillor accused of rape attends Civic Centre safeguarding meeting

An Oldham councillor bailed on suspicion of rape appeared in the Civic Centre last night for the first time since his arrest on 8th September, 2022. The male elected Member, whose identity, and the name of the political party to which he belongs, has still not been made public, was arrested at his home afterContinue reading “Councillor accused of rape attends Civic Centre safeguarding meeting”

Sir Harry’s sinking ship takes on more water

Beleaguered Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council, already swamped with other scandals, most notably around its shockingly poor handling of historic child sexual exploitation, has spectacularly reversed its policy around the archiving of its broadcasts of public meetings, with videos of the sessions now restored to its own YouTube channel. Just ten days ago, in news publishedContinue reading “Sir Harry’s sinking ship takes on more water”