I won't tell the Chief Constable

how to police

I was greatly alarmed tonight, 19th November, when I read the banner headline in the Manchester Evening News (MEN) which said that Tony Lloyd would not be interfereing with police operations. If that were the truth then what use will he be?

Surely the role of any PCC is to iron out the wrinkles that will be found in any police operation. That is what the Government said to me when it wrote in October, 2010, the non-police independent commissioner would have a controlling overview in order to make police services accountable. It must be mutually exclusive if the Greater Manchester Police (GMR) is to be free to do what it wants, then it cannot be held to account.

If Tony Lloyd is not going to control the GMR then it is likely that he is failing in his duty. One wonders if he will have a Contract of Employment to keep him on the straight and narrow.

However, I then saw the body of the article which carried the banner headline and buried in what might be called the small print was this quite different statement. He does undertake to intervene with corruption cases. He reckons (like I and the Government do) that the trust between the public and police will be restored in this way.

I agree with every word of what his statement says. If he delivers on that then I shall be well pleased.

Because there were long gaps between correspondence I thought that I might not have noticed if the investigation had finished and I had missed it. At my age memory plays some funny tricks. So, I wrote to the IPCC to find out what was happening. The reply explained that the investigation was still ongoing. That was a great relief.

Whatever response comes from Tony Lloyd I shall publish here for all to see.

I have also written to the Home Office to see what governs the behaviour of any PCC. Again, if there is a reply I shall publish it here.

In the meantime, I have been doing my own research to find out what is already known about the control over PCC's. In each PCC's territory there will be a Police and Crime Panel that is made up of local councillors (sounds very much like the previous Police Authorities which were useless). These will operate the checks and balances.

There will be room for two co-opted members, but these will be vetted by the Home Office. It seems to me that the control over the PCC's is not likely to attract much attention unless interested parties such as the whistleblower spend their own time monitoring what is happening.

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