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Tory suspended for speaking out?

March 19, 2010 9:28 AM
In Royal Borough Observer on-line

A councillor who dared to speak out has been suspended from the Tory party days after a political adviser's plot to oust the council's deputy leader was exposed.

Cllr Stephen Smith, left, has been suspended from the Royal Borough's Conservative party group by council leader David Burbage pending an investigation.

The Observer has a copy of a letter from Cllr Smith to Conservative leader David Cameron in which he stated 'It is evident that my seat in Eton Wick is no longer safe and that plans are afoot to replace me with some one else'. He added later 'So I now seek your advice on the best way to keep my seat and do the best for the Conservative party'.

At the time all of the borough's 36 Tory councillors had been ordered to remain silent on the issue involving disgraced Andre Walker who resigned after being taped conspiring to bring down Cllr Alison Knight.

Mr Smith, who represents the Eton Wick ward, is believed to have been suspended under rule 11.4, of the Tories code of conduct, Conservative Group Rules.

The rules are laid down by Tory HQ in London which says 'members shall ensure that their conduct in their business and private lives does not course embarrassment to the group or the Conservative party'.

Cllr Burbage said: "He has been suspended from the Conservative group pending investigation for potential breach of Conservative group rules. He is still a councillor for Eton Wick and will continue to serve residents. It is an internal matter which will be resolved internally, not in the Royal Borough Observer."

Read the full story in today's Royal Borough Observer