Statement : TUV leader Jim Allister
I welcome the outcome of the NIAO special investigation into Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council and its robust findings.
It is truly shocking and in my view well beyond the tolerance level where the Chief Executive and other senior officers can cling to office, that the report finds this council indulged in the disposal of public assets of value without evidencing best price, within a culture of not following statutory and guidance requirements and ignoring legal advice, tolerating conflicts of interest, supplying inaccurate information to the Local Government Auditor and an unbridled desire to ‘get deals done’ with commercial interests, with no regard to due process.
The £1 land deal to assemble a site for a hotel developer illustrates the cavalier disregard for the ratepayers’ interests and the lamentable failure of oversight by compliant councillors.
I welcome the auditor’s belief that the disregard for legal process may have rendered the granting of this easement unlawful.
The council must now address this challenge.