by Les May
'The Police and Crime Commissioner for Greater Manchester has been elected by local people and is accountable for how crime and community safety is tackled throughout the region. Your commissioner is Tony Lloyd.'I HAVE taken this quote directly from the web page of the Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) at https://www.gmpcc.org.uk/about/
In other words Mr Lloyd was elected by the people of Greater Manchester and one would assume is therefore to be considered in some degree to be accountable to them. But just how accountable is he really? Does he act like a man who thinks he is accountable?
At the beginning of October my local paper carried an article with the headline 'MP slams police "failings" as abuse inquiry closes.' The MP in question was of course Simon Danczuk, MP for Rochdale. According to the ITV website his words were 'I believe that there has been a catastrophic catalogue of failings by Greater Manchester Police during the investigation of these crimes.'
Responding to this the GMP Police Federation Chairman Ian Hanson said:
'Yet again we see a Manchester MP launching an ill-informed attack upon police officers in an attempt to raise their own media profile.'
When Danczuk repeated his criticism Ian Hanson responded as follows:
'He continues to criticise GMP for its work on historical sexual abuse allegations.
I do not now intend to get involved in a public slanging match with Simon Danczuk over this matter.
Instead I will publicly call him out to deliver the firm evidence that he bases his criticism of GMP on to my office by 12 noon on Monday - and I will personally deliver it to the IPCC.
'If as, I know, there is no firm evidence, then he should back out of this with what little credibility he has got left in tact. His behaviour is not helping the victims of this terrible abuse.
The people of Rochdale expect better.'
As Northern Voices reported on 28th, October Danczuk neither delivered any firm evidence nor accepted the invitation to attend the Police Federation meeting which was held the previous night. But we do know that the Police & Crime Commissioner, Tony Lloyd, did attend the meeting as Northern Voices had a reporter present inside the Renaissance Hotel in Blackfriars when Lloyd arrived in the lift, and he says that downstairs 'You could have cut the atmosphere with a knife.' http://northernvoicesmag.blogspot.co.uk/2016/10/dodger-danczuk-doesnt-deliver.html
Now Danczuk has form when it comes to accusing a police force of failing to carry out its duty properly. This is what Mr. Danczuk had to say in his book about the failings of Northamptonshire police with regard to Cyril Smith:
‘His car had been pulled over on the motorway and officers had found a box of child porn in his boot. The police were naturally disgusted and wanted to press charges. But then a phone call was made from London and he was released without charge. Senior officers had threatened the officers involved with dismissal if he was not released immediately. The mood was tense and sullen as officers stood back while Cyril breezily walked past them to freedom. All the staff who knew about it were threatened with the Official Secrets Act if they discussed the matter any further. Once again Cyril walked out of the police station knowing he was a protected man.'
A lovely story with just one problem, it wasn’t true! http://northernvoicesmag.blogspot.co.uk/2015/09/the-humbug-of-simon-danczuk.html
So how did the PCC for Northamptonshire respond to this attempt to blame his officers? Well he wasn’t pleased with Messrs Danczuk and Baker to say the least. He went to the trouble of appearing on the BBC Regional programme Look East when amongst other things he said that his force had been ‘maligned’ that ‘The force should expect an apology. Northamptonshire Police are not guilty of covering up a crime and indeed letting someone go on to perpetrate more.’ and then the killer line, 'Everything in that book's got to be evidence-led and -based, otherwise you are alerting people to the wrong information.'
And what has our very own PPC Tony Lloyd had to say in defence of GMP and its officers in response to Danczuk’s attack? So far as I can tell the answer is absolutely nothing. Now if I’m wrong about this I am willing to hold up my hand and admit it. But I searched through the news section GMPPC website as far back as the beginning of October and could find nothing.
So how about it Mr Lloyd? Your electorate and the officers of GMP deserve an explanation.