Jacob Williams
Sunday 8th July, 2012

UPDATE: Police and Crime Commissioner candidates

UPDATE: Police and Crime Commissioner candidates

This follows on from an earlier post.

One of my sources believes that John Davies has joined the Conservatives ahead of his widely-anticipated bid to secure the party’s nomination for November’s police and crime commissioner election.

The Conservative party within Dyfed-Powys is holding two meetings to ballot its local members – firstly in Narberth tomorrow (Monday) and then Brecon on Tuesday, after which the result will be announced.

My source says in no uncertain terms that, should Cllr. Davies go on to be adopted to fight the election for the Tories it would create a number of unhappy chappies within the party who won’t be supporting his bid. Some are also threatening to abandon their local association.

Conservative party rules only allow members to vote in these internal ballots if they have been a member for three months before the day of the selection meeting – so if Cllr. Davies attends tomorrow night’s meeting we know of at least one vote he won’t be able to rely on.

The reason I can be so certain can be found in his register of interests, which is publicly available on Pembrokeshire County Council’s website.

In the document, Cllr. Davies does not disclose membership of any political party. It was signed well under three months ago, on the 11th May this year.

The register lists a number of categories of interests which need to be disclosed, and follows the same format for each council member.

Membership of any political party or local association should be listed under point “d.” of the register of interests, because it falls under the category heading: “A body whose principal purposes include the influence of public opinion or policy.”

There is no geographical distinction for this category of interest, unlike point “f” which covers such affiliations as membership of a “Private club, society or association operating within the Authority’s area.”

This is important to note, and is probably the reason why Cllr. Davies has chosen to include the following line in his register: “I AM NOT A MEMBER OF ANY MASONIC ORGANISATION.”

This entry on the register is quite absurd not only in itself, but on a practical note because the list of bodies and other entities in which councillors don’t have an interest is absolutely endless.

For instance, I’m not a member of Mensa. Now some might say that fact goes without saying, but it didn’t occur to me to state this on my register.

It is interesting to note that membership of a masonic lodge would only require disclosure on the register of interests if it operates within the county of Pembrokeshire. However, we can take this ‘false-positive’ to categorically rule out any masonic links.

The good old days when such ties were a prerequisite for getting along in police circles must have passed!

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