The Isle of Wight Council elections on Thursday 6th May 2021 will not be democratic. Two individuals are destroying the fair electoral system on the IOW, a system held dearly in the UK. These two individuals intend to control all aspects of island life including the media, using intimidation and force. They have almost reached the pinnacle of their plan.
Every four years, a certain amount of candidates contest local council ‘ward’ seats in the hope that they may represent their residents in the best and fair way possible. Some candidates take on this responsibility with honesty and integrity with good intentions, while others may have ulterior motivations of using the position purely to improve personal status and wealth. There are many good councillors on the IOW – there are also some disastrous ones. This situation is also found in the wider UK
However on the Isle of Wight, the democratic principles of an election are being thwarted by two top level politicians – the MP and his agent. His agent became the Chair of the IOW Conservative Association in 2017 just after his friend Bob Seely became MP. He gained this position unelected as his only opponent mysteriously withdrew on the morning of the vote (details here). He is also the self imposed Chair of the IOW Conservative Selection Committee having complete autonomy of who gets awarded candidacy nominations. He is also the agent to all 39 of the Conservative candidates in the 2021 local elections. He has chosen the candidates through the process of interviewing each one personally, even though they may have been councillors for years or decades already. Some have been removed due to disagreeing with him – some get moved to wards that will be deemed impossible to win. An example of this click here.
Other evidence of unelected Pugh’s interference is outlined in red below.
The name is David Pugh – unelected in any capacity, but at present the most powerful politician on the island. Even more so than the MP.
In his unelected position, Pugh is unaccountable – having no obligation to explain his actions to the public. David Pugh used to be the Leader of the IOW Council between 2007 and 2013, until he lost his ward seat as councillor amid controversy over his lobbying connections with Cratus Consultancy. His Wikipedia page describes vote rigging etc. He has been desperate to regain control of the council ever since, but knowing he is unelectable, he has managed to manipulate his way into an even more powerful position via the ‘Back door’.
Pugh operates a political lobbying / consultancy company called ‘David Pugh Associates Ltd’ formerly know as ‘Chine Consultancy’ of which clients are, or at least have definitely been recently IOW Ferry company Wightlink. His company has clients seeking planning permissions, government grants, etc. His LinkedIn profile click here.
HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?
2/ The selection of impressionable candidates who Pugh can later utilise easily.
Examples: Hand-picked teenage candidates subservient to Pugh. Just turned 18, Matt Ambrosini.
Cara Lock, 19.
3/ The removal of any candidates who object or disagree with Pugh. An example below – Michael Murwill:
4/ Pugh ordered all Conservative candidates to not attend any election Hustings. This absolute control over them including the ‘leader’ (in title only) means no ability for the ward residents to ask them questions. The campaigning is done only through highly manipulative misinformation on election leaflets.
5/ Highly misleading information within each Conservative candidate’s election leaflet giving false impressions for voting choices.
WHAT CAN BE DONE TO STOP THIS?
Pugh can not be sacked. The only way to remove this unelected dictatorship over the Conservative Association and in turn the IOW Council, is not to facilitate a Conservative led council for the next four years. If Pugh’s Conservatives reach the milestone of 20 ward seats out of the 39, David Pugh gets to run the council.
Basically even if you are historically a staunch Tory, you must either not vote at all, or look at the alternative candidates to choose from.
The ‘Independents’ (Our Island, IIN, or fully Independent such as Ian Dore above) Greens, Labour, Lib Dems are promising a working coalition … with self administering scrutiny overseen by each party. The island will once again have transparent and scrutinised policies and decisions. Corruption will be impossible.
Let’s face it, if all 39 Conservative councillor candidates are instructed to refuse answering questions before the election, what are the chances of them answering questions transparently afterwards? The only things they’ll say, are the things David Pugh wants you to hear. Corruption of the system will have no hurdles to extend further.
As an islander born and bred, the island feels to me more than just home… it feels like family. When your home and family is being taken advantage of you fight it. If not, you’re just as bad as the perpetrators themselves.
If you do vote, vote with your conscience on Thursday.