Central heating contract warmers – the SNP group on West Dunbartonshire Council have nothing to smile about on that score.
By BILL HEANEY
Politicians are basically blowhards who never tire of telling us how wonderful they are, and West Dunbartonshire’s chief burger muncher, Jonathan McColl, is giving Boris Johnston a run for his money as top man on that score.
However, Councillor Jonathan, the SNP leader of our basket case local authority, wouldn’t have a chance of catching the Tory leader in any race.
He would be out of puff, not cream puffs though, and back on the biscuits, trailing far behind Boris not long after the start.
Unless he was doing it in a LYING FOR BRITAIN competition.
Roly poly Jonathan is familiar with the business of being economical with the truth, but he is not good at it, and frequently gets caught out.
He is an embarrassment to the SNP and that’s why the Nationalist candidate for Westminster, Martin (the Meerkat) Docherty-Hughes, should keep him out of sight until the General Election is over on December 12.
I was going to write “under wraps” at this point, but a large tarpaulin off the back of an enormous lorry might just do the job when it comes to keeping Jonathan covered.
Although it’s doubtful if a lorry would be large enough to take on board and conceal his lies.
Jonathan McColl, Martin Docherty Hughes and Brendan O’Hara of the SNP.
Not to mention the SNP’s cover-ups, obfuscation and victimisation here in West Dunbartonshire.
The fact that his anti-democratic SNP colleagues have backed his sanctions against The Democrat without uttering a word of protest puts Jonathan in that very Scottish category of “sleekit cowering timorous beasties”.
Not wee ones though.
They have absolutely no time for freedom of the press or granting public access to information.
They have placed us in a difficult position here at your council-banned local digital media platform.
Especially now that we will be spending much of our time over the next six weeks covering the General Election.
In spite of the SNP, of course.
We thought we might just ignore Martin Docherty-Hughes and his colleague down the Firth, Brendan O’Hara, in manner similar to the way they have boycotted us – and, very importantly our readers – over the past two years.
But that would not be right. It would a dereliction of duty as journalists to let them off the hook for the disastrous decision made by them.
Nationally, the SNP, who are predicted to sweep the boards at the ballot box on December 12 will be far from happy with them, but they too have failed to respond to our requests to pull West Dunbartonshire into line.
However, there will inevitably be constituencies which the SNP will not win, and hopefully West Dunbartonshire and Argyll and Bute will be two of them.
If they do lose their seats, then Martin Docherty Hughes and Brendan O’Hara will not have far to look for someone to blame.
What Jonathan McColl and the SNP group on the council deserve from them this Brexmas is a Christmas tree up their kilts. Or a even a thistle, maybe.
And for there to be no presents under the tree for them, at least none which fall foul of the code of conduct or the procurement rules they have so often ignored.
They appeared to be at it again this week when the SNP excluded the press and public from a council meeting to enable them to push through a 30% increase in a £15 million project.
Cllr Jim Bollan, of the Community Party, who torments the heart and soul out of them, said later: “This was all done behind closed doors to cover up the embarrassment of yet another procurement disaster, which has cost the Council Taxpayer an additional £5 million.
“The item was the new water pumped heating system being installed at the Queens Quay project in Clydebank.
“Projected cost £15 million, cost to date £20 million. They paid consultants £200,000 to draw up the spec which was then changed and allocated to another consultant who was also paid.
“The private contractor is running rings round the Council and making all sorts of monetary claims against WDC.
“This is another botched project where the Council Taxpayer will end up paying the price.
“It is that bad they have hired another specialist consultant at £49,000 to evaluate if the price increases are valid or not.”
I don’t think The Democrat would be exaggerating if we were to suggest that Councillor McColl and his cronies – remember the one, their education convener no less, who, when asked to comment on the dire roadworks situation in Dumbarton, replied that the traffic jams would bring the community closer together? – should resign from their posts before the electorate give any consideration at all to supporting the SNP candidates with their vote on December 12.