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Yvonne Mosquito appointed Acting West Midlands Police Commissioner

Yvonne Mosquito appointed Acting West Midlands Police Commissioner

🕔14.Jul 2014

Birmingham Labour councillor Yvonne Mosquito has been appointed Acting West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner following the death of Bob Jones.

Ms Mosquito, who was Mr Jones’s deputy, was formally appointed by the Police and Crime Panel today (Monday 14th July 2014) and will serve until August 21, when an election will be held to fill the post until 2016.

Yvonne Mosquito told the panel that Mr Jones had been “the perfect PCC” with a passion for hard work and communicating with ordinary people.

Whilst it’s certain that Ms Mosquito is putting herself forward for the election, she faces opposition from other Labour hopefuls to become the party’s nominated candidate.

Former Solihull councillor David Jamieson and Walsall councillor Mohammed Nazir are reportedly interested in the £100,000-a-year position. Paulette Hamilton, who faces de-selection as Labour’s Handsworth Wood councillor, has also been mentioned as a possible candidate.

Mr Jamieson is a former MP and junior transport minister, while Cllr Nazir is an assistant police and crime commissioner for the West Midlands.

However, Ms Mosquito, who served on the former police authority for 16 years and was its vice-chair, is regarded as hot favourite to be the Labour candidate.

She was interviewed today by Labour’s National Executive Committee along with other hopefuls and a decision about the party’s PCC candidate will be made shortly.

Details about the PCC election can seen on the official website here. 

Police and Crime Panel chair Cllr Darren Cooper paid tribute to Mr Jones. Cllr Cooper said: “I worked very closely with Bob and there were times we locked horns on a few issues. But in terms of his knowledge of the police and in terms of his values as a human being, he was someone I held in the highest regard.”

Cllr Cooper criticised UKIP for ‘political opportunism’ by calling the PCC election before Mr Jones’ funeral could be held.

Whoever gets the PCC role after the election may not be employed for very long. Labour is likely to scrap police commissioners if the party wins the 2015 General Election.

In a letter to PCP chair Darren Cooper, who is also Labour leader of Sandwell Council, Ms Mosquito said that she was qualified to become acting PCC because she had been a member of Mr Jones’s staff. Under the Police Reform  and Social Responsibility Act, acting PCCs must be staff members.

She will inherit all PCC functions apart from powers to issue or vary a police and crime plan.

In her letter, Ms Mosquito said: “I should be considered for the post of acting PCC because: I was appointed as Deputy Police and Commissioner (DPCC). Prior to appointment as DPCC I was member of the Police Authority for sixteen years including being its Vice Chair.

“As DPCC in the last eighteen months since appointment I have worked with Bob on the full range of functions and responsibilities that come with the office of Police and Crime Commissioner.

“My intentions as acting PCC would be to exercise such statutory functions of the Acting PCC which are necessary to comply with Section 1 of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011, in summary:

  • Secure the maintenance of an efficient and effective police force for our area.
  • Hold the Chief Constable to account for his functions and the functions of persons under his direction and control, plus such other duties and responsibilities set out by the Act.

“My known current priorities are:

  • Continued implementation of the Police and Crime Plan.
  • Re-establishment of the Strategic Policing and Crime Board to maintain effective links to local areas, strong oversight of policing and continuity in the Audit Committee function.
  • Decision-making as required.
  • Submission of annual report for 2013-14 to the Police and Crime Panel.”

 

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