Boris Johnson accused of leaving London mayorless

Preoccupied with his new MP role, the mayor has washed his hands of two important City Hall bodies

 

Boris Johnson has been accused of ‘clearing his desk a year early’ after he handed over two important roles to civil servants today.

The London Assembly will hold confirmation hearings today for the mayor’s nominees to take over as chair of the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) and the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC). Johnson was the chair of both bodies until he resigned shortly before the election.

He has nominated Sir Edward Lister and Neale Coleman as his replacements.

Johnson caused anger among local residents when he resigned from the OPDC just one month after he took up the chair, having attended just one meeting. Local Assembly member Dr Onkar Sahota said he received letters of complaint from residents about the mayor’s blatant lack of interest.

Today Dr Sahota accused Boris Johnson of ‘leaving Londoners increasingly mayorless’ in the wake of his becoming MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip:

“This is just the latest chapter of Boris Johnson’s long goodbye from City Hall. The Mayor seems intent on clearing his desk a year early and focusing his energies elsewhere since his election to Parliament, leaving Londoners increasingly mayorless.

“These two regeneration projects are massively important and make many controversial decisions, handing over the reins to civil servants like this will remove an important layer of democratic accountability.”

The London Legacy Development Corporation was set up to create jobs and opportunities in the community around the Olympic Park, with the aim of transforming a deprived area of the capital. The corporation says it is ‘directly accountable to Londoners through the mayor of London’.

That accountability looks likely to suffer now that Johnson has abandoned the project.

Ruby Stockham is a staff writer at Left Foot Forward. Follow her on Twitter

Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.