Tory is ‘sixth in line for high jump’

Coun Mick Burchill in Ukraine, following last February's revolution.
Coun Mick Burchill in Ukraine, following last February's revolution.
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A security and intelligence expert says he expects to be the sixth Tory councillor forced to leave the Conservative Group on the East Riding Council ahead of the local elections for “not doing what he’s told.”

Mick Burchill, who worked for 10 years in Ukraine, said he had “never seen such undemocratic practices in what is supposed to be a civilised Western country.

“The Conservative group on East Riding Council controls the (Haltemprince and Howden Conservative) Association which is now controlling the branch. It should be the other way round. In Ukraine you do as you are told or you are shot - here they put you into political exile instead.”

Coun Burchill was elected last November with an increased majority to represent Willerby and Kirk Ella, following the death of councillor Angela Ibson. The operational director for Moda Solutions Ltd said: “I am told through the grapevine that I am going to be deselected as an election candidate at a specially called executive Association meeting in the near future. If they are going to charge me with any wrongdoing, I should be allowed representation. “They are going to get rid of me because I suppose they think I am trouble.”

It follows the resignation of fellow councillor Mike Whitehead, who has blamed bullying and intimidation in the ruling Conservative Group. Members of the Association’s executive committee have been called to a special meeting tonight to deal with what chairman Angus West called a “genuine emergency”.

Mr West was unavailable as was council leader Steve Parnaby. Coun Parnaby has said his job is to concentrate on the 50-plus members of his group who “are more than happy with the way things are.”