Friday, 25 February 2011

Nice Work if You Can Get It

The news that NCC is investigating whether public money was siphoned off to pay for Labour's campaigning in the 2007 elections is not a big surprise, including the bit that they're being allowed to investigate the matter themselves.

The documents reportedly have the names 'Harold' and 'Stephen B' on them. Some people, nasty suspicious paranoid people obviously, are asking whether these names refer to political consultant Harold Tinworth and NCC's Director of Communications Stephen Barker.

NCC has been repeatedly caught out over its publicity being over political and as Barker is in charge of all that it wouldn't be a huge surprise to find his prints all over this. He also leads a charmed life - how many other senior officers would still be in post after putting videos of work colleagues on the internet, seemingly without their knowledge?

Tinworth has of course graced these pages on a number of occasions and famously included a proposal to advise executive councillors on their election manifesto in his pitch for a new contract. He only had to submit a tender because the District Auditor told NCC that the rather informal way his services had been procured for the previous five years wasn't acceptable. Gosh! You don't think he was giving campaign advice during the last election as well do you? Surely not.

Of course if the DA could have been bothered she could have looked into this but she refused to do so, claiming that she couldn't go back to accounts that had already been audited. Now it turns out that actually she can. It'll be interesting to see if she finall pulls her finger out and does something useful for a change.

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