Now apologies to those people who have seen my previous rants on this issue and think maybe I am protesting too much, but if one thing really gets to me it is a lack of fairness.
A couple of weeks prior to the Assembly elections the Wales on Sunday, The Echo, the Western Mail , GTFM and BBC Wales all carried a headline news piece regarding allegations of harassment that had been made against my colleague Welsh Liberal Democrat Councillor Mike Powell, who was at the time the Assembly candidate for Pontypridd.
In the time honoured tradition of the press the news last Thursday that the CPS is not bringing charges did not warrant the same column inches.
As Mike’s agent we maintained at the time that the allegations were malicious and part of an on-going campaign to try and discredit him. The allegations came after Mike took pictures and videos of Allen Bevan, a town Councillor in Pontypridd and an employee of Owen Smith MP, parking in the Town Council car park when apparently he was not on official business but doing his shopping in town. Mike reported what he considered to be an abuse of privilege to the relevant authorities but they were not interested. He posted the videos on you tube at which point Bevan made his first allegation of harassment.
Now there are people who have said that Mike should not have bothered with such a trifling issue in the first place, but his sense of fairness fails to see such things as anything other than the way Labour show a total and utter disregard for people around here. They put up car parking charges for everyone else but they have way of getting around paying! A minor matter in the great scheme of things maybe but still symptomatic of a greater disease,
The Police dismissed the claims, but Bevan returned with a further allegation which the Police have found no grounds for. Whilst accepting that the Police have to investigate claims brought to them, it seems that they have been used in this case for political ends.
It is a sorry state indeed when the Labour party has to stoop to such a level, it leaves a nasty taste in the mouth and discredits Mr Bevan and his supporters. It begs the question just who is harassing who? It seems to me that a substantial amount of Police time has been wasted on this, all this on the word of someone who has long been a political opponent – Bevan has lost to Mike on three occasions in the Trallwn ward County Council elections since 1999.
Prior to this six complaints had been made to the Ombudsman in a little over twelve months by Labour members and activists. All of them were dismissed, but again this has taken up a substantial amount of public time and resources.
Just who is harassing who?