Ottaway’s attitude to democracy enough to make anyone gag

JON BIGGER has tried to lobby his MP about the Gagging Bill. Banned from “Sir” Tricky Dicky Ottaway’s regular surgery, now he finds the old expenses claimer is not even bothering to offer a reasoned response to letters

Last week, I wrote an account on my blog about how, together with a group of other constituents, I’d tried to hand a petition to Croydon South’s MP, Richard Ottaway.

You mean you expect me to represent your views? How ridiculous! "Sir" Richard Ottaway, the absentee MP for Croydon South

You mean you expect me to represent your views? How ridiculous! “Sir” Richard Ottaway, the absentee MP for Croydon South

The petition concerned the Gagging Bill, or to give it its full title, The Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill. It has become known as the Gagging Bill because people fear it will stifle political debate and curtail trades union and charities activities in the run-up to elections.

The petition was due to be delivered by a very small band of campaigners, most of whom are pensioners. But rather than being greeted warmly by our elected representative and allowed into his office, instead Ottaway had us greeted by the police and we were left out in the cold and on the pavement. This story was picked up by Inside Croydon and followed up by the national press.

I wrote to Ottaway in advance of the Bill being debated in the House of Commons. I was hoping that if he wouldn’t meet with me and others to hear our concerns on the issue, he would perhaps give it careful consideration and take up our concerns.

I received an email from his office on Friday. But rather than this detailing any form of answer, it simply told me to look at his website for more information.

Thank you for your recent campaign communication. Due to the high volume of correspondence I regret I am not able to send a personal reply. However, a response to your particular campaign can be viewed on my website at http://www.richardottaway.com On the Home page click on ‘Campaign Responses’ and follow the link.
Best wishes
The Rt Hon Sir Richard Ottaway MP
Croydon South

Ottaway voted against improvements to the Bill by simply following his Conservative party line.

He clearly disagrees with the concerns of campaign groups, but he has totally failed to explain why – not even the long update on his website helps in any meaningful way.

The Bill is now heading to the House of Lords on Tuesday, but in the meantime people living in Croydon South have not had their concerns answered and their MP continues to ignore opportunities to engage with them properly, despite admitting that he has had a high volume of correspondence on the issue.


Coming to Croydon


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About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
This entry was posted in 2015 General Election, Croydon South, Jon Bigger, Richard Ottaway MP and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Ottaway’s attitude to democracy enough to make anyone gag

  1. jcb76 says:

    Reblogged this on Trade Onion by Jon Bigger.

  2. derekthrower says:

    See this wasting of police time has made it onto the local Sunday politics broadcast.

  3. davidcallam says:

    MP ignores constituents’ views. Dog bites man. Neither is news.
    Richard Ottaway, never the most assiduous of MPs, is about to retire. Asked to choose between his party, which has recently rewarded him with a totally undeserved knighthood, and his soon to be former constituents, he opts for the former. Entirely predictable, surely.

  4. mraemiller says:

    “However, a response to your particular campaign can be viewed on my website at http://www.richardottaway.com On the Home page click on ‘Campaign Responses’ and follow the link.”

    Brilliant.
    Maybe the process could be streamlined further by the construction of a single Tory
    “reasons we’re not doing what you want” database.

    Type in your complaint and instantly generate a webpage on your MP’s website telling you why they wont do whatever in their own unique prose style.

    Anyone bother to ask Mr Philp his views on this issue?

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