Well done for hold­ing of­fi­cials to ac­count

The Oban Times - - NEWS - Stu­art White, Struan Cot­tage, Mi­nard.

Sir, I was de­lighted to read that the Stan­dards Com­mis­sion for Scot­land has de­cided in favour of Coun­cil­lor Michael Bres­lin’s prin­ci­pled stance on coun­cil­lors’ rights to hold coun­cil em­ploy­ees to ac­count for their ac­tions.

A healthy democ­racy re­quires more than just vot­ing ev­ery so of­ten – it is also es­sen­tial that we scru­ti­nise those in­volved with gov­ern­ment, at what­ever level, in be­tween elec­tions.

At a na­tional level, the se­lect com­mit­tees of the House of Com­mons do ex­cel­lent work in this re­gard.

Cab­i­net min­is­ters, civil ser­vants, busi­ness lead­ers – in fact, any­one with a hand in pub­lic life – are sub­jected to in­ci­sive ques­tion­ing.

One spec­tac­u­lar ex­am­ple of his process has ex­posed the loot­ing of the pen­sion funds of thou­sands of shop work­ers and may re­sult in the strip­ping of the knight­hood from the per­pe­tra­tor.

Any­one who thinks that this is a bit far re­moved from our own quiet back­wa­ter in Ar­gyll should think again as our chief ex­ec­u­tive is paid al­most as much as our prime min­is­ter, af­ter all.

I can see no rea­son why, how­ever highly they think of them­selves, our own lo­cal ‘high heid yins’ should not be sim­i­larly ex­am­ined.

So thank you, Coun­cil­lor Bres­lin, for stick­ing your head above the para­pet on our be­half and I am de­lighted that at least one other, Coun­cil­lor Ge­orge Free­man, has spo­ken in his sup­port. Are there any oth­ers?

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