Advisers' Announcements (Supplementary) [1]

Session date: 
June 29, 2000
Question By: 
John Biggs
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


That answer seemed to cover a multitude of sins because fundamentally it does not answer the question of whether he agrees with Lee Jasper's statement that Lee's non-appointment to the Police Authority was a Labour Party stitch-up and secondly if he is happy that that statement was accurate and whether he is happy that all his spokesmen can make any statement of their choosing on any matter that they like whenever they choose to. I think we might need to adjust the boundaries if, for example, a member of your Cabinet advocated fox hunting in London, would that be something to your liking; if they thought that apartheid was a reasonable form of government, would that be to your liking; if they thought that you were an inadequate Mayor, would that be a statement to your liking and it is not just a question of us joshing at this meeting - it is about us working out whether the office of Mayor of London will have the dignity and the authority that it needs. For that to happen, people need to be able to speak to your advisers and to get authoritative replies which they know represent your views on matters.

Supplementary To: 


Answer for Advisers' Announcements (Supplementary) [1]

Answer for Advisers' Announcements (Supplementary) [1]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

When you are meeting with Lee you will get his best advice on those areas of equalities that he is being retained to advise on. When you are talking to Lee in his own private role as a leading representative of the Afro-Caribbean community in London he will tell you what he actually thinks in his own perspective. I think Lee may have been misquoted. I think what he actually said was "Is this another Home Office stitch up?" but whether that makes it any better or any worse is a matter for Members to discuss. I do want to emphasise, though we have made it clear here this is not a collective responsibility Cabinet and I have always thought it a ridiculous assumption that everyone must be in complete agreement and everything must be co-ordinated. Real life isn't like that and I am not going to feel the need to justify what each individual says or point out areas that I disagree with - what, say, Darren Johnson may say on issues of green politics or what Graham Tope may say on equalities. Let's just have a debate. Londoners will decide who has got the right emphasis and so on and I am not going to get into discipline and control. I just think that has been so damaging for political dialogue nationally. I don't want to replicate it in London.