WALTER CRONXITE reports on the private deliberations of the political party duopoly at the Town Hall as to who gets to wear the Trumptonesque outfits for the next year
The next Mayor of Croydon will be Bernadette Khan.
Or it might be Badsha Quadir.
It all rather depends on which party gets the majority of council seats at the local elections on May 3.
The Labour group, which currently controls the Town Hall, made its decision to nominate veteran councillor Khan at its meeting last week. The Tories have plumped for Purley councillor Quadir, the restaurant owner who is noted as a most generous donor to local party funds.Khan was first elected to the council nearly 22 years ago, and has held a seat in West Thorton ward uninterrupted since 2002.
All that the Labour group’s website can find to say of Khan’s achievements in three decades at Croydon Town Hall is: “She is on the fostering panel and the corporate parenting panel. Bernadette is always keen to hear from the residents of West Thornton.” Which is nice.
The Labour group had to hunt around for another candidate for Mayor after the current absentee deputy mayor, Mike Selva, got himself de-selected by Labour members in Broad Green ward. Selva will not be a councillor after May 4.
Quadir’s nomination shows two things. One, that the Tories do, at least publicly, consider that they have a chance of regaining control of the council at the local elections.
And second, that the appointment of Mayor really is a matter of Buggins’ turn.
Quadir’s generosity to the local Conservative cause (£12,000 over four years) was recognised by grateful Tories in 2013 when, after just three years on the council, he was made deputy mayor, with the expectation of stepping into the “top job” from May 2014. Those plans were scuppered when the Tories were defeated at the ballot box.
It appears as if a year as deputy mayor has been regarded as only the down-payment in return for all those donations. The political parties don’t get to nominate the Mayor, who chairs council meetings, unless they have the majority in the chamber.
The formalities of the mayoral appointmentss for 2018-2019 will be announced in a brief process ahead of tonight’s meeting of the full council in the Town Hall chamber.
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