BREAKING: Councillor loses Cabinet position over racism allegations

Councillor Lenny Walker
Councillor Lenny Walker

Crawley Borough Council has announced that Cllr Lenny Walker has been dismissed from his post as Cabinet member for leisure and cultural services with immediate effect.

The announcement was made today (Tuesday February 12) and follows allegations made by Cllr Walker of bigotry and institutional racism within the council.

A council spokesman said: “The decision to remove Cllr Walker from his position followed a meeting with council leader Cllr Bob Lanzer, and chief executive Lee Harris, where he was unable to produce any substantive evidence to support his very serious allegations of bigotry and institutional racism within the organisation.

“Cllr Walker’s claims have unduly damaged the reputation of the council and, very unfortunately, the staff who work for it.”

The spokesman added that Cllr Bob Lanzer would be filling the vacant post “very shortly”.

Cllr Walker (Con, Maidenbower) insisted he had not accused the council of institutional racism but was “reiterating the views of staff” at the council who he said had no confidence in raising concerns “for fear of their jobs”.

He added: ““My chief exec disagreed with me and that is his decision. He has the power to do so, and that is the decision he has taken.

“Was the dismissal an over reaction? That is not really for me to judge. It is disappointing, but I am hoping some good will come out of this.”