Why The Borough’s Relay Elections Will Ensure Spink’s Influence Continues On This Island For Years To Come

UNFORTUNATELY this year’s local elections will not remove Spink’s Canvey Island Independence Party (CIIP) from its power bases on the island – even if the Conservatives, as predicted, obtain a clean-sweep.

Because Castle Point Borough Council elects a third of its councillors every year (with no election taking place on the fourth) it will take islanders at least another two years to rid themselves of their presence.

The Council decision to move to elections by thirds was instigated by the Leader of the Council (Labour’s David Wells) on 16th March 2000, during  the Labour administration of 1995 to 2003. It effectively removed the ability, from 2004 onwards, for the electorate to be able to replace any majority in a single election every four years (as had always been the case previously). Together with their ED9 policy, Labour’s militants had laid the foundations for retaking the council surreptitiously in the face of an election they knew they could not win.

In 2004, the militants rebranded themselves as the Canvey Island Independent Party and set about the task of regaining power. They would no longer have to fight a local election on a manifesto or vision for the borough: relay elections would enable them to fight individual seats on a ward-by-ward basis and, by fuelling public protests, allow them to conduct a long-term campaign against the borough’s Conservative majority. The militants would no longer be able to be dismissed as easily as they were in 2003.

During the last six years, their clandestine campaign has been very successful.

This year, Peter May (Canvey Island Central); Nick Harvey (Canvey Island North); Joan Liddiard (Canvey Island South); and Peter Grieg (Canvey Island Winter Gardens) are all up for re-election on May 6th; but we will still be stuck with the likes of Dave Blackwell and Anne Wood for some time yet.

Dave Blackwell (Canvey Island Central) comes up for re-election next year – along with Lee Barrett (Canvey Island East); Grace Watson (Canvey Island North); and Neville Watson (Canvey Island Winter Gardens). But residents will have to wait until the year after to reject Anne Wood (Canvey Island East) – along with her compatriots John Anderson (Canvey Island Central); Martin Tucker (Canvey Island North); Brian Wood (Canvey Island South); Janice Payne (Canvey Island South); and Barry Dixie (Canvey Island Winter Gardens).

Among those, Brian Wood was elected on a CIIP ticket; but is now an independent.

So the bad news is that the CIIP, under Spink’s direction, will continue to disrupt local politics in the borough for some time to come. And we can probably expect Colin Letchford to vigorously continue his petition for an elected mayor as another avenue for Spink and Blackwell to exploit.

The fight to regain Democracy on this island, and rid it of those whom adopt aliases to misrepresent themselves as members of the public and control our views, will not be over on May 6th…

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8 Responses

  1. I feel that when Spink, who is putting so much into this campaign, is beaten the CIIP will slowly cease to exist.

    All they can do is attack the Conservatives, they have not come up with any alternative policies and cannot form a majority. They are a complete waste of space.

    It won’t be too long before the people of Canvey realise that.

  2. Have you looked at the signatories to Bob Spink’s nomination papers? A final act of treachery by Dave Blackwell.

  3. You sound as if you are surprised Julian ? I am also not sure it will be the final act !!

  4. Not surprised, just very very disappointed. How can someone who once belonged to a democratic socialist party side with someone who is so right-wing?

    Call me naive, but I put principles and integrity above everything.

  5. Reading some of the leaflets put out by the CIIP it seems to me that principles and integrity are in short supply.

  6. The borough’s minority opposition, and Spink, will be conducting the lowest form of politics in this election campaign. But how do the democratic parties combat it?

    Reply to the lies and have their opponent say: ‘Well, of course, they would say that;’ or is it best to just ignore them?

    The problem that the main parties share is having their voice heard above the noise generated from the local media, which Spink has yet to employ. If anything, this campaign will be fought and won on the doorstep – and any local hustings that can be arranged.

    It would be good if local church leaders would come forward and offer their halls as venues…

    • And here comes Spink’s media, Ted.

      Despite the discussions being held at the moment, the Echo is preparing a blitz attack for its ‘own’ campaign concerning Canvey’s concord pool.

      http://www.echo-news.co.uk/news/local_news/castlepoint/8109399.Dr_Feelgood_guitarist_joins_battle_to_save_island_pool/?ref=rss

      • Impeccable timing, Cynical.

        Just in time for beating those pavements over the week-end.

        Expect a spread from the Echo containing pictures of Wilco with Spink.

        This is the issue that the CIIP is banking on to win them their seats – and they cannot be accused of reneging on not mentioning the issue while the Town and Borough council are holding discussions (when the Town council can find a window in which to attend, that is).

        ‘It’s not us,’ they will say. ‘Speak to the Echo. It is their campaign.’

        This is going to get REALLY dirty from now on…

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