Tory defection highlights Boris’s weakness on law and order

A Conservative borough chairman has defected to Labour, citing the London Mayor's cuts to the police and inability to stand up for the NHS as critical failures.

Boris Johnson’s reputation continues to wobble on preventing and reducing crime. A Conservative borough chairman has defected to the Labour Party, citing the London Mayor’s cuts to the police and inability to stand up for the NHS as critical failures.

Foyzor Rahman, formerly chairman of Barking Conservatives, resigned from Johnson’s party saying:

“I’m joining Labour because I believe in more police to make our streets safer and support for the NHS. On both of these issues the Conservatives led by David Cameron and Boris Johnson have failed, cutting the number of police officers and neglecting the health services we all rely on”

Johnson ran comparatively strong in Barking in 2008, whose council has been under Labour control since 1964 and where the party currently has a monopoly of councillors, winning 15,710 votes to Livingstone’s 16,799.

The defection also highlights a law and order problem for the Mayor, who decided to resign as chair of the Metropolitan Police Authority in 2010, citing time pressures, despite earning £250,000 per year as a Daily Telegraph collumnist.

Conservatives are in general facing trouble on the issue after Home Secretary Theresa May faced a savaging from the Police Federation Chairman Paul McKeever at the organisation’s conference. Anger has been building among police as it has transpired that front line officers have been facing redundancies, despite election-time promises of no front-line cuts from David Cameron.

Now was that a U-turn or a broken promise?

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