Where's Cammy Day? Edinburgh Council's new leader could learn from Adam McVey about leadership – Nick Cook

When it comes to political leadership, visibility matters. Almost three months since the local elections, I take little pleasure in saying that Edinburgh’s newest council leader, Cammy Day, still has a thing or two to learn from his predecessor, Adam McVey.

Have you seen this man? Cammy Day is leader of Edinburgh Council
Have you seen this man? Cammy Day is leader of Edinburgh Council

When I was a councillor, I was often one of Councillor McVey’s primary sparring partners in debates. Despite being poles apart politically, I respected that he understood the need for the council leader to be seen to lead. Or at least to be out in the media, defending the positions of his administration.

By contrast, all that springs to mind when I think of Councillor Day’s leadership, thus far, is his decision to start a social media spat with discount supermarket Lidl over their faulty alarm system.

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But it is early days for Councillor Day’s leadership, meaning he has time to move on from this bargain bin start.

Former colleagues tell me he has proven himself engaged and across the detail inside the City Chambers. Perhaps Cammy is simply taking heed of longstanding calls from the city’s Conservatives to first get the basics right.

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Edinburgh council leader Cammy Day snubbed by Finance Secretary Kate Forbes over...

Given recent revelations that Finance Secretary, Kate Forbes, cruelly snubbed Councillor Day’s request to discuss why SNP seem content to sustain Edinburgh’s position as Scotland’s lowest funded local authority, the stakes are high.

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It’s in residents’ interests that Councillor Day should succeed as council leader. Let’s hope he returns from the summer break ready to get out there and make headlines for the right reasons, fighting for fairer funding for our Capital city.

Nick Cook was political advisor to former Scottish Conservative leader, Ruth Davidson, and an Edinburgh councillor 2012-22