Edinburgh Council leader Adam McVey has abandoned principled SNP colleague Alison Dickie over bullying and intimidation claims – John McLellan

Last week’s denigration of SNP Councillor Alison Dickie by a leading member of her administration as a “Miss Marple” because of her determination to seek the truth behind claims of bullying and intimidation within Edinburgh Council was stunning in its cynicism.

Wednesday, 29th September 2021, 4:45 pm
Edinburgh Council leader Adam McVey could have at least defended Alison Dickie's sincerity, says John McLellan

Bad enough though it was, the reaction of her own party leader was arguably worse. Twice Councillor Adam McVey had the opportunity to defend her and twice he left her to swing.

He could have said how he disagreed with the views expressed in her recent Evening News article but didn’t doubt her sincerity. He could have said that he respected her passion even if he didn’t agree with her methods.

But no, he chose not to challenge a cutting attack on a party colleague and Councillor Dickie would have felt thoroughly exposed when only one SNP councillor, Neil Gardiner, came to her defence.

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I have no doubt she would have mounted a robust defence herself, but she was absent due to ill health which made the attack even more cowardly.

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Clearly Councillor Dickie and I have very different views on the constitution, but the allegations arising from years of what the authority had to accept was maladministration are not party-political matters, yet she is being ostracised for standing up for what she believes to be right.

If anything exposes the culture within this council, it is the council leader’s abandonment of a principled colleague, in favour of defending whatever faith council employees have in “the system”. The irony went whistling over his head.

John McLellan is a Conservative councillor for Craigentinny/Duddingston

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