Category Archives: Shifa Mustafa

#PennReport: Croydon has been let down by political leaders

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The report into the council’s financial collapse that has been withheld for nearly two years includes damning criticisms of some of the council’s most senior staff and political leaders. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Croydon’s dysfunctional council went … Continue reading

Posted in Alison Butler, Children's Services, Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Paul Scott, Report in the Public Interest, Richard Simpson, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa, Simon Hall, The Penn Report, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

#PennReport wanted police probe into possible misconduct

CROYDON IN CRISIS: For nearly two years, the council has withheld a detailed report into ‘possible wrong-doing’ at the Town Hall, together with recommendations for a Met Police investigation and the seeking of a refund on the £437,000 pay-off to … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Crime, Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Inside Croydon, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Report in the Public Interest, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa, Simon Hall, The Penn Report, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Former council exec drops employment case on technicality

Guy van Dichele, the former council exec director who was suspended in February 2021 as part of the “Kerswell Kull” of senior staffers who had run the borough in the lead-up to its financial collapse, has dropped his Employment Tribunal … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Shifa Mustafa, The Penn Report | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

The deal is in: council facing another expensive staff pay-off

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Late cancellation of an Employment Tribunal hearing this morning avoids the council washing its dirty linen in public. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Jason Perry, Croydon’s part-time Mayor, could soon be asked to rubber-stamp another expensive “golden handshake” … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Mayor Jason Perry, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Council exec Simmonds quits after 18 months ‘gardening leave’

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The final obstacle to the release of the Penn Report into possible wrongdoing in Croydon has finally been removed, just ahead of an Employment Tribunal hearing this week. By STEVEN DOWNES Hazel Simmonds, one of five council … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Report in the Public Interest, RIPI II: Fairfield Halls, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Planning chief’s position untenable as developers’ charter axed

Town Hall correspondent PEARL LEE on the seismic shift going on in the council’s planning department Croydon’s part-time Mayor, Jason Perry, will deliver on one of his key promises tonight when, at his first council cabinet meeting since his election … Continue reading

Posted in Business, Chris Philp MP, Coulsdon, Croydon Council, Croydon South, Heather Cheesbrough, Housing, Kenley, Mayor Jason Perry, Michael Neal, Paul Scott, Planning, Property, Sanderstead, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Secret report into wrong-doing at council still kept under wraps

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Eighteen months after an investigation into how the council’s finances collapsed, the report into the affair – which prompted the resignation of the council leader and four execs – remains unpublished. And the council CEO intends keeping … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hamida Ali, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Joy Prince, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Lynne Hale, Report in the Public Interest, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Council ignored £5m offer to revive Fairfield’s reputation

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Moves to take the management of the troubled arts centre out of the hands of Bournemouth-based BHLive are being resisted by Labour politicians. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Senior officials and the Labour cabinet member in charge of … Continue reading

Posted in 2022 Croydon Mayor election, Art, Ashcroft Theatre, BH Live, Borough of Culture 2023, Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Jo Negrini, Music, Neil Chandler, Oliver Lewis, Paula Murray, Shifa Mustafa, Theatre | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Suspended director sues Kerswell for ‘race discrimination’

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The council running one of the country’s most ethnically diverse boroughs could be dragged through the courts, with one of its rare BAME directors accusing it, and its chief executive, of racism. By STEVEN DOWNES Hazel Simmonds, … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Hibberd handed key economic job as exec hiring continues

One of the directors recruited at Croydon this week has a track record that saw him blamed by the trades unions in Brighton for his part in causing a damaging bins strike last year While most of what’s left of … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Dean Shoesmith, Hamida Ali, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Nick Hibberd, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Tories miss chance to call for police action over Fairfield fiasco

Political editor WALTER CRONXITE on the latest fall-out from the £37m overspend on the arts venue as the borough’s councillors – Tory as well as Labour – appear reluctant to turn their old mates over to the police The council … Continue reading

Posted in 2022 council elections, 2022 Croydon Mayor election, Alison Butler, Brick by Brick, College Green, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Hamida Ali, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jason Perry, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Paul Scott, Planning, Report in the Public Interest, Richard Simpson, RIPI II: Fairfield Halls, Shifa Mustafa, Simon Hall, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Negrini and execs ‘failed to ensure council was acting lawfully’

CROYDON IN CRISIS: An auditors’ report into the ‘shoddy’ deal that handed the Fairfield Halls refurbishment to loss-making builders Brick by Brick hints at potential fraud and accuses senior officials of large-scale negligence. EXCLUSIVE by WALTER CRONXITE, Political Editor Some … Continue reading

Posted in Alison Butler, Brick by Brick, College Green, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Hamida Ali, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Paul Scott, Planning, Report in the Public Interest, Richard Simpson, RIPI II: Fairfield Halls, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Council to be rocked by second Report In The Public Interest

CROYDON IN CRISIS: The £70m ‘Fairfield fiasco’ has provoked serious concerns with auditors over the potential misuse of public money, with bungling developers Brick by Brick under scrutiny. EXCLUSIVE By STEVEN DOWNES External auditors are to issue a Report In … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Ashcroft Theatre, Brick by Brick, Business, Colm Lacey, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Hamida Ali, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Paula Murray, Report in the Public Interest, Richard Ennis, RIPI II: Fairfield Halls, Sean Fitzsimons, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Ali promises to release report into ‘collusive, unhealthy culture’

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Has the council leader made another meaningless promise to the borough’s residents over ‘disciplinary action’ against those responsible for the Town Hall’s financial collapse? By STEVEN DOWNES The potentially dynamite but still unpublished Penn Report into possible … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hamida Ali, Hazel Simmonds, Improvement Board, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Report in the Public Interest, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Former health director suing council for constructive dismissal

CROYDON IN CRISIS: ‘Kerswell’s cull’ of the council’s executive directors appointed or promoted by her predecessor, Jo Negrini,  is not going as smoothly as might have been hoped. And it appears that most will escape any disciplinary action. By STEVEN … Continue reading

Posted in Brick by Brick, Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Report in the Public Interest, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Kerswell set to depart after completing cull of Negrini execs

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Having overseen the removal of almost all of Jo Negrini’s ‘executive leadership team’, it seems that the interim chief exec wants to move on to better things. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Croydon Council is to begin the … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Elaine Jackson, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Heather Cheesbrough, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Robert Henderson, Sarah Hayward, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Hayward promoted to investigate Regina Road scandal

CROYDON IN CRISIS: A controversial former Labour council leader is promoted and given a possible £40,000 pay rise by Hamida Ali in the latest round of musical chairs at the Town Hall. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Sarah Hayward has been … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Housing, Katherine Kerswell, London-wide issues, Policing, Sarah Hayward, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Exec director resigned week before suspension was announced

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Minutes from another council’s meeting shows that Guy Van Dichele was offered a job in Southampton eight days before he was ‘suspended’ from his post as executive director ‘health, well-being and adults’. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Documents … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hamida Ali, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Robert Henderson, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Two executive directors in shock resignations from council

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Staff were told this afternoon that two of the ‘executive leadership team’ who were suspended from duty last week have quit their jobs. EXCLUSIVE by STEVEN DOWNES Guy Van Dichele, Croydon’s executive director “health, well-being and adults”, … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Lisa Taylor, Shifa Mustafa, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

‘Unintended consequences’: government scraps pay-off cap

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Political editor WALTER CRONXITE finds that the era of half-million-pound rewards for failure might not be over at the council just yet Those council exec directors on six-figure salaries who are sweating on the outcome of a … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Rebel councillor kicked off traffic committee on eve of meeting

Our Town Hall reporter, KEN LEE, on the latest twist in the saga of the borough’s Low Traffic Neighbourhood schemes Pat Ryan, the veteran councillor for Crystal Palace and Upper Norwood ward, has been removed as a member of the … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Crystal Palace and Upper Norwood, Cycling, London-wide issues, Pat Ryan, Shifa Mustafa, South Norwood, Steve Iles, TfL, Transport | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

The Kerswell cull: ‘This is a really difficult situation’ says CEO

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Our Town Hall reporter, KEN LEE, on the latest bulletin to council staff intended, perhaps, to keep up morale In the vintage (and not very “woke”) BBC sitcom Are You Being Served, the doddering old proprietor of … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Shifa Mustafa | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The Kerswell cull begins: five senior council execs go ‘off-grid’

CROYDON IN CRISIS: Monday night’s constitutional changes at the Town Hall were quickly followed by ‘unprecedented’ action from the interim CEO. By STEVEN DOWNES Almost the whole of the senior leadership team at the council “went off-grid” today. Inside Croydon … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Guy van Dichele, Hamida Ali, Hazel Simmonds, Jacqueline Harris-Baker, Jo Negrini, Katherine Kerswell, Lisa Taylor, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

McArdle will recognise failure when he arrives in Croydon

‘Even at the end, it didn’t recognise the reality of the circumstances it had created for itself: insolvency… the distrust of partner agencies; the despair of the local voluntary sector; the sense among staff that their professionalism, dedication and effort … Continue reading

Posted in Croydon Council, Hamida Ali, Improvement Board, Katherine Kerswell, Section 114 notice, Shifa Mustafa, Tony McArdle | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Conflicts of interest, incomplete contracts, unlawful payments – how the Fairfield Halls refurbishment cost Croydon £50m-plus

EXCLUSIVE: Council was warned in 2017 of problems with the management of works at the borough’s flagship arts centre. By STEVEN DOWNES A report by the council’s internal auditors has raised very serious concerns over the mismanagement of the multi-million-pound … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Ashcroft Theatre, Brick by Brick, Business, Croydon Council, Fairfield Halls, Jo Negrini, Shifa Mustafa, Tony Newman | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments