Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Martin Smith's Departure

The local newspaper, East London Advertiser, has done a sterling job disclosing details of the departure of Tower Hamlet's Chief Executive, which Labour have been seeking to hide away. It is understood that Labour leader, Lutfur Rahman, told the Chief Executive that he had no confidence in him, which led to Martin Smith taking annual leave and consulting his Union.

At tonight's Council meeting Labour's repeatedly attempted to describe the events as a mutual agreement were laughable. As an employment lawyer, I know first hand how compromise agreements are negotiated and discussed. It ultimately will depend on how much is offered by the employer, as to whether an ex-employee will agree to confidentiality. Just because it is stated repeatedly that it was a mutual agreement will not make it true. No doubt having been told to go, they have come to an agreement over the terms on which he will leave.

A decision that will be paid for out of the pockets of Tower Hamlets council tax payers.

So far as I can see there was no evidence that Martin Smith had any intention of going until the Labour Advisory Board meeting.

Lutfur Rahman's statement to the Council Chamber was disingenuous - he praised Martin Smith for the work he had done, but said we needed a fresh approach. The opposition groups, led by Councillor Golds, challenged this, but Lutfur was consistently allowed by the Mayor to avoid answering the question and get away with it.

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