Saturday, 26 April 2008


The summaries by The Standards Board of England of its investigation of complaints following on from the ''f***ing w***er' altercation at The Winter Gardens are most revealing. Timing of the complaints received by The Standards Board is also interesting, as I will explain in a moment.

The incident took place on 14th April 2007 and it would appear that Cllr Watkins filed a complaint against Cllr Ezekiel with the Standards Board on 11th May 2007. The Standards Board reports:

"The ethical standards officer concluded, based to a significant extent on Councillor Ezekiel’s own evidence, that Councillor Ezekiel had been offensive and discourteous towards the retiring mayor and another councillor. "

Concerning this same incident a complaint was then filed by a person against Cllr Clive Hart with the Standards Board on 15th June 2007. The Standards Board finding is quite forthright in clearing Cllr Hart of any impropriety whatsoever.

" The ethical standards officer found no evidence of any failure to comply with the Code of Conduct." Is there an error of names in the summary because the summary continues:

"The ethical standards officer did not consider that Councillor Clark’s ( do they mean HART?)conduct, even as described by the complainant, could reasonably be regarded as bringing his office or authority into disrepute, and found no evidence of any failure to comply with the Code of Conduct."

It seems to me that such a comment from The Standards Board is as close as they can get to stating it was an unwarranted and even vexatious complaint against Cllr Hart.

We then have the multiple complaints filed against Cllr Clark ( an elderly retiring Mayor) with the Standards Board on 15th July 2007 a whole three months after the incident in April at The Winter Gardens. Let's deal with the finding about The Winter Garden dispute on 14th April 2007 first, as the other allegations whilst not disputed, had nothing to do with The Winter Gardens. The Standards Board is quite clear about Cllr Clark' position here:

" She further concluded that even if Councillor Clark had behaved as the complainant and other members of his political group had alleged, his behaviour would not have been sufficiently disrespectful to be a breach of the Code of Conduct."

The words 'even if' imply that The Standards Board gave little credence to allegations made by the complainant (Ezekiel?) and members of his political group (Conservatives).

So the clear conclusion drawn by The Standards Board of England concerning the incident on 14 April 2007 is that Cllr Ezekiel's conduct had been offensive and discourteous whilst Cllrs Hart and Clark were cleared of any Breaches of The Code of Conduct that night in quite strong language from The Standards Board. It is irrelevant to the issue that The Standards Board felt that no further action 'in the circumstances' was needed.

So what about the multiple complaints generated against Cllr Clark on the 15 July 2007. One was about Cllr Clark's reference to Holocaust Day that fell that year on 27 January 2007 and comments concerning Christmas and Cllr Ezekiel's faith. The Standards Board found that in respect of The Holocaust Day remark by Cllr Clark in Dec 2006? Jan 2007? , he was offensive and disrespectful and in the other complaint cleared of any breach.

In whose hearing were these remarks made?

Mr Ezekiel's wife, no less, and presumably at least 6 months prior to these remarks being the basis of a complaint to The Standards Board. Like me, you might well ask, why did it take Cllr Ezekiel so long to get 'upset' about these comments? If they were of sufficient cause for complaint 6 months later, then they should have been the basis of an earlier complaint, surely?

So what conclusion can we come to? I made an analogy earlier this afternoon about a naughty boy being summoned to his Head's office for 'being rude and abusive to another pupil' and coming up with the pathetic response ' He was rude to me last term , sir!'

The reason why the Tories need to ditch Ezekiel is because of his conduct on the evening of 14th April 2007. He is the only person complained of that evening, who was in breach of the Code of Conduct, as reported by The Standards Board of England, in that unseemly incident and he holds the most senior postion in TDC.

You may be interested to compare a complaint made against Cllr Green by officers at TDC that was dismissed by The Standards Board recently, without even investigation involving him! His party (Labour) removed him from his 'shadow cabinet' post. Should this not show the Conservative Group what they ought to do?


CLIVE HART said...


Cllr. Ezekiel

A year of high-level investigations is now over and I write to demand an apology for your aggressive and abusive behaviour at the Mayor’s Retiring Ball.

By your own evidence, you accept that you shouted vulgar abuse at me in a failed attempt to goad me into becoming involved in a fight. That was absolutely appalling behaviour, especially coming from a District Leader at a civic event.

Instead of phoning me the next day to apologise, you then deviously set about ‘slinging mud’ in each and every direction in order to cover your own shortcomings. The most serious aspect of these actions was to make spurious and malicious allegations to the Police against me, which were extensively investigated and thrown out by the Crown Prosecution Service, the Police and finally, the Standards Board for England.

You knew only too well, that due to your senior position, your bogus allegations would have to be thoroughly and exhaustively investigated by senior officers whose valuable time would be wasted.

If you still refuse to apologise to me, you certainly should, at the very least, apologise to the female staff and guests at the Winter Gardens who were forced to witness your outburst of aggressive behaviour and loud yobbish ‘gutter’ language.

As the District Leader you should also apologise profusely to all the decent residents of Thanet, especially ratepayers and taxpayers, for wasting a whole year of time, energy and resources of our local Police and other agencies with your spurious and malicious allegations.

Cllr. Clive Hart



At the Mayor’s retiring ball last April, Councillor Doug Clark who had just completed a busy year of engagements representing Margate, was the victim of an unwarranted, brutish and disgusting verbal assault from a man who at the time would not have been in a fit state to tie his own shoelaces. Councillor Ezekiel, having been restrained by a number of concerned and horrified people, including his own wife and the deputy mayor, then turned his attention to another TDC member, in an attempt to goad him into a fight. This disgraceful conduct was subsequently reported to the Standards Board for England. On learning of this fact Ezekiel then made a complaint to Kent Police, concocting allegations that were clearly intended to mitigate his own culpability. These were fully investigated and found to have no foundation. The second part of the attempted damage limitation exercise, concerned spurious claims of months of racial harassment, based on a shorthand entry in the Mayor’s diary and a query regarding the Council Leader’s religion prior to a Civic service.

The claim that Cllr. Doug Clark, a senior East Kent Magistrates Court Chairman and a JP of 27 years standing is in any way racist is ludicrous. Aside from the fact that his former wife is herself of the Jewish faith, Councillor Clark has for many years provided accommodation in his house for hundreds of students from every corner of the globe. This pillar of the community, who spent last Christmas day in Cliftonville, cooking dinner for the homeless, has now had his good name besmirched on the front page of a newspaper by a man, who is so out of touch with contemporary morality that he can conduct himself at a public function, exactly like the foul mouthed yobs he has complained of at public meetings. Anti social behaviour coupled with hypocrisy was then followed by false allegations to the police, wasting hours of their time. To say that I am disgusted, would be putting it mildly. Thanet needs and deserves much better leadership, Ezekiel should resign forthwith.

Cllr. John Watkins

(Margate Central Ward TDC)

Anonymous said...

Why are officers complaining about Cllrs when they (so called officers) are above any scrutiny.

Perhaps TDC's Monitoring Officer (Paul Moore could explain!!!

bertie biggles said...

I am pleased to see that Cllrs Hart and Watkins are requesting an apology from Cllr Ezekiel for his unseemly conduct at The Winter Gardens last year. We can all act poorly on occasion but the mark of a true gentleman, whatever his position or status in life, is that he is quick to apologise for any offence caused.