The original meaning of the word Tory is robber, outlaw or plunderer.
On April 11th 2016 Dennis Skinner was suspended by Parliament for the day for calling the Prime Minister “dodgy Dave”. He was speaking in the Commons after David Cameron went there to defend his own financial affairs in the wake of the so-called Panama Papers scandal. The Commons Speaker John Bercow asked Dennis Skinner to withdraw his use of the term “dodgy” but Dennis repeated the word – Mr Bercow then ejected him from the Commons.
Swanley Tories may not be in the same league, but they are certainly drowning in controversy. Swanley Tories had been charging Swanley & District Labour Party of abusing council staff and demanded that we took down key pages on our website. Swanley & District Labour Party rejected all charges, refused to be bullied and kept the web pages up. Swanley Tories then threatened to suspend a Labour Councillor. That also proved to be an empty threat. Now the Tory attacks on Labour have blown up in their face.
Last week Tory Tony Searles stepped down as leader of Swanley Town Council, while facing allegations of sexually harassing an employee of the council. At a bizarre council meeting on Wednesday 8th June, Tory Councillor Jim Halford refused to sit with other councillors at the table. He stated, later on in the meeting; “I hate Tony Searles’ guts.” He walked out of the meeting.
It now seems that the former Leader of Swanley Town Council & Finance chief councillor Tony Searles has been called to account after a probe found that he had flouted planning rules, as reported in the Sevenoaks Chronicle.
The Tories have also postponed publication of the annual audit without explanation. The open hostilities that are evident still do not reveal the whole story. There is more to come.
Tory mismanagment of Swanley can be seen all around us. Our roads are becoming dangerous and a threat to public safety, not to mention damaging cars. Grasslands are going uncut and Swanley is increasingly looking like a ghost town.
The problems lies in the Tories celebration of self interest and personal gain. Indeed, they have become so self-interested they are even warring with each other. There is no sense of community and the collective. The naked individualism of the Tories is devastating the country and we are also seeing the consequences in Swanley. Greed consumes.
It is time for change. It is time for a Labour Government and local council that serves the people and their communities.