Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Kenton Conservatives confirmed as official opposition on Brent Council

It appeared that there might be further consideration of which of the Conservative groups to recognise as the principal opposition during the pretty confusing Annual General Meeting Council meeting on May 20th and resolution before the General Purposes Committee on May 27th was mentioned. A constitutional working party was mentioned.

However I have today confirmed with Council officers that no additional business has been added to the GP Committee agenda  for tomorrow which is below:

1 Declarations of personal and prejudicial interests

Members are invited to declare at this stage of the meeting, any relevant financial or other interest in the items on this agenda.

2 Minutes of the previous meeting

3 Matters arising

4 Deputations (if any)

5 Representation of Political Groups on Committees

At its meeting on 20 May 2015 the Council reviewed the representation of political groups on its main committees. As soon as practicable after such a review, those committees are required to conduct a review of the representation of political groups on any sub-committees they may have. This report sets out the rules to be applied during the course of the review.

6 Appointments to Sub-Committees / Outside Bodies
7 Pensions Board membership
The committee will consider nominations for membership of the Pensions Board and a recommendation from officers to appoint an independent Chair.

8 Any other urgent business
The officer stated:
I have not been notified at this time of any other urgent business to be considered at this meeting.   I can also confirm that the principal opposition party was agreed at the annual council meeting on 20 May as the Conservative Group, comprising Cllrs Kansagra, Colwill and Maurice.


  1. As I know from experience over the Full Council meeting on 2 March*, a request to have a matter heard as "any other urgent business" can be made at any time before the start of a meeting. However, the person chairing the meeting decides whether the matter is "urgent business".

    The Chair of the General Purposes Committee is Cllr. Muhammed Butt, so even if the Brondesbury Park Conservatives (or Brent Conservative Group, as they now claim to be) were to ask that the matter be raised as "urgent business", I can't see Cllr. Butt agreeing to have the question of who is the official opposition raised at item 8 on the agenda.

    Philip Grant.

    *P.S. - I had suggested that Cllr. Butt should be given the opportunity to answer the two important questions (arising from the Rosemarie Clarke Employment Tribunal case) I had put to him publicly in February 2015 under "any other urgent business" at the Full Council meeting on 2 March. Cllr. Butt did not act on this suggestion, but Cllr. Warren did ask the Mayor, as Chair of that meeting, to allow the questions to be put, and Cllr. Butt to answer them, under "any other urgent business". The Mayor used his discretion to decide that the matter could not be raised under this item.

  2. What I cannot understand is why Labour Councillors voted on which group of Tories should be the "official opposition". They should have sat on their hands and told the Tories to sort themselves out. What makes that farcical is that not only did the Labour Councillors vote, but they were whipped to all vote the same way!

    1. ... and the way that Labour Councillors were whipped to vote was to chose the "official opposition" that has not actually opposed them, rather than the three Conservatives who have tried to hold them to account.

      You would have thought that with 56 of the 63 Council seats, Cllr. Butt and his silent majority would not need to resort to such cowardly behaviour.

      Philip Grant.

    2. Including the so-called "Kilburn rebels"...