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Conservative Council Adviser Quits after Phone Call is posted on-line

March 6, 2010 6:36 PM
Windsor Conservatives Political Adviser Andre Walker

Conservative Council Group Officer Andre Walker has resigned

The Royal Borough Observer reported on-line today that Andre Walker, the Conservative political adviser at the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead has resigned. His resignation came after a member of the public posted a recording of a phone conversation, on the internet, claiming he was conspiring to oust the council's Conservative deputy leader Alison Knight.

The member of the public, who claims to be politically unaligned, recounted that he was sitting near Mr Walker and he was so disgusted by what he overheard, that he decided to record the comments.

During the ten minute chat with an as yet unidentified person, Mr Walker is alleged to have sworn and made rude comments about a councillor, an allegation he denies.

The Observer reports that a statement issued by the Royal Borough said: "Effective from this morning (Friday 5 March 2010) Mr Andreé Walker has tendered his resignation from his position in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead. This has been accepted and he is no longer employed by the council. The Royal Borough will not be making any further comment."

The Observer goes on to report Conservative Mr Walker as saying:

" I went into work today (Friday) as usual. My position was untenable and I resigned.

"I was on the train on Tuesday night, I made some comments I shouldn't have, I was incredibly unlucky to sit next to a left wing activist who decided to record me.

"I put the council in a difficult position, I have apologised for that. A conversation I had was overheard, I said the wrong thing, I have apologised. That apology has gone to various people in the group including Alison Knight.

I resigned because that was the appropriate thing to do. I haven't spoken to Alison Knight.

"I think I have been pretty reasonable. I owned up to a mistake I have made. It's pretty hurtful for me to hear all these allegations."

Liberal Democrats are calling for the Council to launch an investigation into the phone call to identify who Mr Walker was talking to. The previous Liberal Democrat administration of the council had abolished tax-payer funded political group officers, however they were reintroduced by the Conservatives upon taking office in 2007.

Speaking locally Liberal Democrat spokesman Julian Tisi said "Group Officers are supposed to provide research support to their respective councillors to help them formulate policies. They are not there to conduct explicit political campaigning either for or within the party they support."

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