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[05 MAY 00] COVENTRY CITY COUNCIL NEWS
Labour Leader Could Be Toppled
BY ANTONY HOPKER

Cllr John Fletcher, Coventry City CouncilLabour leader John Fletcher said he was "disappointed" at the defeats suffered by his party in the Coventry City Council elections.

But he said the result was "par for the course" because it reflected a national trend.

He said:

"You always get votes like this in the mid-term of a parliament. 1996 was our second best year ever and there were seats like Bablake and Earlsdon that we won then that we knew it would be hard to hold on to.

"Last year we did very well and didn’t lose as many seats as we might have.

"Of course I’m disappointed. I am when we lose one seat. We’ve lost some good colleagues and excellent councillors and there are some there we want back as soon as possible."

The result will put extra pressure on Cllr Fletcher’s position when the Labour group meets to decide who will lead the next council. The group has fallen from 44 to 35 councillors.

Under new Labour party rules, contenders for posts in the council have had to declare their interest before the vote.

It is believed that Nick Nolan and Arthur Waugh have put their name forward for the leader’s position.

The Labour group will chose its new leader and deputy leader by a secret ballot, with the least popular candidate dropping out of each round of voting until a candidate has an overall majority. The vote will take place on Friday evening.

On Saturday the group’s executive committee will meet and draw up a list of the recommended members of the new cabinet, which is being formed as part of changes to the council’s political structure.

These choices will be put to the group members on Monday. Once the cabinet has been chosen the remaining Labour councillors will decide the chairs and vice-chairs of the new scrutiny committees that the party controls - some of these posts are being given to the Conservative group.

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COMPOSITION OF COVENTRY CITY COUNCIL

  NEW OLD
LABOUR 35 44
CONSERVATIVE 15 8
SOCIALIST (NELLIST) 3 2
LIBERAL DEMOCRATS 1 0

    

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COVENTRY CITY COUNCIL



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CWN / Politics / Coventry City Council / 5 May 00

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