Petition calls for by-election after councillor switches allegiances

A petition is demanding a by-election be held in a Maidenhead ward after a sitting councillor left the Conservatives for the Liberal Democrats.

Conservative voter and St Mary’s resident Alexander Cobb has launched a petition calling on Cllr Gurch Singh to hold a by-election following his defection from the Tories.

Cllr Singh has joined the Liberal Democrat council group and is a pending member of the Royal Borough Lib Dems.

Mr Cobb has started a petition, which has so far garnered 62 signatures, calling for a by-election.

He said: “Cllr Singh was elected as a Conservative, not Liberal Democrat. The voters in St Mary’s chose a Conservative, not a Liberal Democrat.

“By choosing to join another party, Cllr Singh has broken the trust of the people who voted for him.”

On Wednesday, June 17, it was announced that Cllr Singh had joined the council’s Lib Dem group. However, later on that day, council leader Cllr Andrew Johnson (Con, Hurley and Waltham) published a post on his official Facebook page stating Cllr Singh had been told earlier that day he was to be suspended from the RBWM Conservatives.

Cllr Johnson stated that Cllr Singh was under investigation for several code of conduct breaches. Cllr Singh has stated he feels he ‘acted properly and represented residents well’ as a councillor.

In response to the petition, Cllr Singh said: “In July 2010, Councillor Wilson Hendry joined the Conservative Group from the Liberal Democrats.

“I do not recall them organising a petition for a by-election then.

“Free of the Conservative whip, I can vote in the best interest of the residents and that is what I intend to do”

To view the petition visit https://bit.ly/2ZlncNX

A council spokesman added: “We will respond formally if the petition is registered on the council website and receives the number of signatures required for it to be discussed at Full Council.”

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