Wednesday 15 May 2013

Watching Paint Dry


After the utter tedium of the morning session, Cneifiwr resolved to go and get a life, but was dragged back by urgent messages suggesting he tune into yet another car crash speech by the Council Leader, Kevin Madge. On logging back in to the live broadcast, Peter Hughes Griffiths was ripping into the leader's report and its spin.

Pam Palmer, the leader of the Independents, was then invited to speak as deputy leader. She clearly had not anticipated that the job might involve having to say anything, and looked distinctly miffed to be asked to respond. So she fumbled and growled away for a couple of minutes, looking very cross.

This was followed by a serious of unanimous votes approving various reports, and the show came shuddering to an end. With the prospect of many more dire repeat performances from Kev and Pam, we can only hope that the final curtain comes down on their long political careers just as abruptly.

For all who missed today's broadcast, you should at some point be able to watch it at your leisure here. The first half will certainly be an aid to anyone suffering from insomnia.

Carmarthenshire County Council sputtered into the twentieth century today with its first ever webcast. The technical quality of the first broadcast was good, with clear sound and good camera work.

As expected, the content left a lot to be desired. The fancy dress uniforms were straight out of the nineteenth century, as were a good many of the speakers. After two hours of polite speeches, congratulations and expressions of thanks, the meeting was adjourned for a two-hour slap-up lunch off camera, leaving first time viewers with the not wholly inaccurate impression that they had intruded upon a rather chummy private club.

Cllr Sian Thomas gave a good speech as outgoing chair of the council, and was the only speaker to introduce any realism into the proceedings. She noted with some disappointment that the council had not always taken advantage of her hidden talents, and she hoped that it made full use of the talents of her successor, Labour's Terry Davies. She also felt sure that the new vice chair, Cllr Daff Davies (Independent) probably had some hidden talents somewhere.

And that was about it, although viewers may have spotted that, as usual, the Independent benches looked rather empty, and the meeting began with a roll-call of apologies for absence. Absentee Independents included Cllrs Meryl Gravell, Giles Morgan and Theressa Bowen, while Labour's Keri Thomas also stayed away. Frankly, who can blame them, although some of the absentees often have more pressing business elsewhere (such as Mediterranean and other cruises in some cases) when there is real business to be transacted.


Anonymous said...

Shown your true colours in todays blog posting...

I've been wondering what political party you represented until today. I watched Mr Madge's presentation and thought it was OK, there's no need to be constantly negative, but obviously your a Plaid.

You talk about transparency but I do wish you'd make it clear on the top of your blog that you are a Plaid supporter. That would be trasnparency of the media, as you report to be

Anonymous said...

Correction Giles Morgan was present in the afternoon & T Bowen was late arrival . Noticeably absent were 6 labour county councillors whereas only 2 Independent MG- hols PH -sick were absent , Plaid had a few missing from their ranks so please be more accurate

Cneifiwr said...

Anon 22.45 The list of names of those absent was the one read out by the chief executive. Perhaps you should take your complaint up with him.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of political persuasion we not have an insight to our leader and his tongue in cheek role, I can see a lot of councillors losing their seats at the next election. We have Kev spitting at the table and hard to understand, the script was so well written, Pam didn't know when to come in and insisted on dancing at the desk. Peter was extremely well versed and that will will points with all of the public!!

He knew what he was saying his body language was that of an opposition party leader.
He did seem the most comfortable with the cameras!
Although I'm not Plaid, I did think they raised a few decent points!!!

The councillors really need to watch their body language and eye movements ..... SOME TRAINING FOR THEM FROM MAYBE MARK???

Lovely to see what we have elected working as puppets from a script..... The passion and conviction they have is not quite as powerful as I had hoped!! I'm just grateful I can see them in action and spot their weaknesses! Reading small print seems to be one!!,

Anonymous said...

I don't think that Cneifiwr has hidden his political sentiments, you have been a bit slow on the take up have you not, so what?

Anonymous said...

I don't think it matters what political party Cneifiwr represents, do you?

The filming of meetings I'm sure will at last sort the sheep from the goats and hold us in good stead for the next County Council election!

Anonymous said...

Cneifiwr ! That guy you used to refer to as Elmer Fudd is now boss man.
He can see the whole gallery from there. He could take anybody out with one shot.
If Bugs Bunny were to show up along with Gwiwer 383 i would get out of there real fast.

Emlyn Uwch Cych said...

Y***ch. Just watched Cllr Leader Kevin's hang wringing, rambling, barely comprehensible support for the new Chair.

Why is he speaking English? Siân speaks Welsh, Terry speaks Welsh, so why not Kevin?

Anonymous said...

Kev has his tongue in his cheek and we couldn't understand him in English.... We would have no hope at all if he spoke Welsh.

I think he only knows the basics in Welsh..... Kev ydw I, fi'n byw in Garnant..... He speaks Wenglish!!!!! Translator would have to be paid double!!!

They commented on the live stream of translation being great... It was ..... Cos they had the SCRIPT!!!

We need new blood, new members and new passion for the people of Carmarthenshire!! We may get less arrogant threatening staff then, especially in the social care section!!!

Had filming been allowed during Delyth Jenkins time, at least the ombudsman would have been mentioned and the councillors would have had to support her properly and ensure those abusers were thrown out of their jobs!!

Delyth Jenkins said...

It's not too late, and as the Councillors were not given the full picture at the time, I think it should be discussed again and dealt with appropriately this time.
I am quite happy, if I am approached, to attend a full Council meeting, and the Councillors can ask me any questions they wish, and I will tell them the truth, and I won't need a script.
Maybe then they will decide that the abusers, bullies and as importantly, the Officers who protected one bully in particular, are brought to task.

Delyth Jenkins said...

I have many, many questions I need answers to, which include:-

1) Why were all the allegations of abuse of a vulnerable person by a Manager not presented to the disciplinary panel in May 2007?

2) The Investigating Officer (Officer M) admitted to me in correspondence dated the 21st June 2007 that it was his decision not to include all the allegations of abuse of a vulnerable person in Officer B's disciplinary. Despite this, Officer M was promoted to Head of Mental Health & Learning Disabilities in April 2008 on an interim basis, and then permanently in July 2009, even though two draft Ombudsman's reports had been produced by then severely criticising him.

3) Why was the assault on me by the same carer, who 13 months later went on to hit a service user over the head in an almost identical way never investigated? Documentation I received from the Council shows that Officer F was asked to make a written statement on the same day as I had a telephone case conference with an Employment Tribunal Judge and a top Barister from Cardiff, engaged by the Council, in February 2011. This statement was her explanation of why she didn't instigate an investigation. No investigation took place and the carer went on to abuse a vulnerable person. I have raised this issue with the Director of Social Care several times but he refuses to deal with it.

4) Officer M admitted to me in Nov. 2006 that when I told him and the Director of Social Care that Officer G had become very devious and was using other people to bully for him, whilst offering them protection, Officer M told me that he and the Director looked at each other, nodded and agreed with me. This poses the question if senior management knew that another senior officer was treating staff in this way, why did they do nothing?

The Ombudsman concluded that there had been serious failure on the part of officers at all levels to record relevant facts, decisions and actions (point 249) and the Ombudsman also stated (point 324) that it was clear to him that I was entirely justified in taking my complaint outside the Authority.

Anonymous said...

Under point 249 the needed to be some form of disciplinary held by senior officer above those involved. This would have led to disciplinary and somebody out of a job!!, boy what managerial, human resources experts we have in the county!!!

If managers etc have failed, this means they are ineffective in their current position.... Why did you not move them out CCC?

Too right you were justified in your complaint!! More staff need to be open and honest about these things!

Delyth Jenkins said...

The criticism within Point 249 was only one example of many within the report. If all Councillors didn't read the report at the time, I would urge them all to do so now. The content is absolutely shocking.

I noticed some weeks ago that the Public Services Ombudsman For Wales website has been updated, and all reports prior to 2011 are no longer available on his website.
I have written to the Ombudsman, letter dated the 22nd May 2013, pointing out that I appreciate that websites need to be updated, but the earlier reports need to be available on his website, even if an archive section is set up. It is vital that these reports, which are in the public interest, are available for the public to access at all times.
I refer specifically to the complaint I took to the Ombudsman in July 2006 about abuse of vulnerable adults. The Ombudsman published a damning report in Sept 2009,Report number 200600720.
I await his response.

Delyth Jenkins said...

Anon 16.58

I agree with you, several Officers should have been suspended and procedures followed at the time, but that could have opened another can of worms and that was the last thing the Authority wanted. I suppose bad news is best buried as soon as possible.