It is our view at WW, that this fraud proves that Waverley Borough Council is guilty of maladministration in not having sufficient supervision of standard work practices.
It is also guilty of covering up its maladministration in order to manipulate May 7th 2015 local elections and guilty of not being open and transparent as required by the Local Government Transparency Code 2015 by informing the local taxpayers of their mistakes.
Because of these transgressions the public have had no chance to ensure that the correct adjustments to their supervision and work practices have been made to prevent a future similar occurrence.
There is no longer any need to hide under the cloak of secrecy quoting sub judice. The case is closed the criminal has been found guilty and sentenced, so how about coming clean Waverley BC this is not just our view here at WW – this view is shared by many other taxpaying residents of the borough, including some who voted in the 2015 election!
It is believed Waverley Council lost £25,000, which it was unable to recover. Its insurance premiums will also increase as a result of its poor work practices. Perhaps it will come clean with the figure “Your Waverley” has actually lost of “our money”. However, don’t hold your breath! Because so far they have refused to reveal these details.
We do not know the name of the individual that changed the account details but as stated all they had to do was go to Mears office in the Council building. The ineptitude of Paul Wen – ham – I getting out and claiming my big fat pension) and the Financial incompetence of Finance Director Clark should be exposed and they must explain!
The Executive and Audit Committee members should resign. This fraud was covered up to prevent bad publicity before the local elections.
A request has been made to Grant Thornton (The Auditors) to do a Public Interest Report on the 14/15 accounts. If that is successful (some hope there!) the Council will have to hold a public meeting within 30 days to explain themselves.
Here’s a pdf of the article in the Surrey Advertiser her: fRAUD copy
This is a freedom of information request from Mr Brian Egan of the address below.
‘ALPENROSE’, 44, OAK TREE ROAD,MILFORD,GODALMING,SURREY,GU8 5JJ
25th March 2016 My Ref. BE/WBC/298
To: Gillian Carson-Jones Waverley Borough Council, The Burys, Godalming, Surrey.
Re: FOI request WAV 1401828/1401837/1401846 dated 3rd, 7th & 12th Dec.2015 answered on 5th January 2016.
In light of the recent court case held in Wolverhampton Crown Court on 22nd March 2016, as a result of which Matthew Lowe was found guilty and sent back to prison for the fraud he perpetrated on WBC, and your refusal to answer my questions in the above FOI request on the grounds that it was not in the public interest and would prejudice the prevention or detection of crime, I hereby request an internal review of my FOI request.
I do not consider your statement that to disclose information about the fraud is not in the public interest because ever since the whistleblower revealed the fraud on 15th October 2015, some 18 months after the event, there has been a huge amount of public interest especially as to how it was allowed to happen in the first place, why the crime was covered up and what precautions have been taken to avoid a similar fraud occurring again.
I challenge your answers to the following questions from my original FOI request.
Q1:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
Q2:- This should have been answered under the Local Government Transparency Code.
Q3, 4 & 5:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
Q6:- You will by now know the extra cost of the insurance premium, please advise what this is.
Q7:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
Q8:- Your answer indicates that the whistleblower did not express his dissatisfaction on the Council’s cover up of the fraud. Would this be a true interpretation of your answer?
Q9:- There are no minutes available to the general public on the link provided therefore your answer is incorrect; can I have the truth please?
Q10:- If no meeting was held how were the 19 senior Members informed, by telephone, e.mail or any other means such as jungle drums?
Q11:- I accept your answer but in view of the fraud and sums of money involved the way in which the Council informed only 1/3 of Members is illegal, undemocratic, not open and transparent and fundamentally a cover up from the vast majority of Members.
Q12:- You have not answered this question but let me remind you that I asked you if Diane James, the Leader of the Opposition, was informed of the fraud. A yes or no would have been sufficient rather than the convoluted diversion you submitted.
Q13:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
Q14:- There is no record of the fraud being discussed in the minutes referred to.
Q15:- The Mayor shut down questions on the grounds that there was on ongoing police enquiry, which was totally irrelevant to the question being asked. This is a matter of your own public records, I was not asking for your opinion I simply wanted you to confirm what actually happened, which you have failed to do.
Q16:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
Q17:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
Q18:- I challenge your refusal on the grounds it is in the public interest and the police investigation is now closed.
B F A Egan
Well – perhaps one day we will actually extract the truth! That the Conservative controlled council buried the information long enough not to affect the way we voted. Perhaps it is time for a re-run of the May 2015 Elections!