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By Ian Dipple Friday 30 May 2014 Updated: 04/06 16:45
CALLS have been made for former UKIP councillor Dave Small to resign from his seat and let voters judge him on his views.
The leaders of both the Conservatives and Labour groups on Redditch Borough Council have challenged Mr Small to quit the Church Hill seat he won last Friday (May 23) and put his claim to represent the people of the district to the test.
As Mr Small’s comments were made before he officially signed documents to become a councillor he was not bound by the authority’s code of conduct and Redditch Borough Council is powerless to act.
A spokesman for the council said it was a democratic issue the council could not comment on.
But council leader Bill Hartnett, who has represented Church Hill for the last 29 years, said he did not believe people in Church Hill got the representative they thought they were voting for.
“I therefore put it to Coun Small he owes it to the electorate to resign and contest the seat again as an independent. I hope residents make their views known and Coun Small does the decent thing and resigns.”
Coun Juliet Brunner, leader of the Conservative group, added there was no place for bigotry and racism in Redditch politics.
“When the Conservative party canvassed residents during the campaign period we did not find homophobes and racists in Church Hill,” she said.
“We must question how he can truly represent the community. He has no choice and should resign immediately.”
Redditch MP Karen Lumley has tabled an urgent question to the Government urging ministers to consider extending a proposal to give voters the power to force MPs to stand again, to councillors.
“The people of Church Hill would certainly never have voted for Mr Small if they knew what his views were. He owes it to the people of Church Hill to stand down and fight for the seat as an independent in a by-election.”
* What do you think? Is Mr Small entitled to his views or should he stand down? Write to the editor at the address on page 16 of this week's Standard or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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