Mayor quits as chairman of police authority
PUBLISHED: 15:03 27 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:42 07 September 2010
London Mayor Boris Johnson is stepping down as head of the Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA), he announced today (Wednesday). Mr Johnson, had only been head of the authority for little over a year, but said he was quitting the post to reorganise and re
London Mayor Boris Johnson is stepping down as head of the Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA), he announced today (Wednesday).
Mr Johnson, had only been head of the authority for little over a year, but said he was quitting the post to "reorganise and refocus" his team.
The current vice chairman of the MPA Kit Malthouse will replace him.
Announcing his resignation at the City Hall, Mr Johnson said: "I am very content that crime is coming down. In view of the reforms that are under way it would be a good thing if we change the chair of the MPA. I can reassure you and reassure members of the MPA that my links with the Commissioner, Sir Paul Stephenson are as strong and as robust as ever."
Mr Johnson was able to become head of the MPA thanks to a law change in 2008 allowing the London Mayor's to lead the organisation.
Mr Johnson's stint in charge was marked by a series of controversies.
Soon after he took up the post former Commissioner Sir Ian Blair resigned claiming a lack of support from the Mayor.
Sir Ian's resignation led to an outcry among senior police officers and the mayor was accused of 'crossing the line' in political interference.
Mr Johnson added that as mayor he would still stand accountable for policing in the capital.
Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn Ed Fordham accused Mr Johnson of abandoning his duty.
He said: "This is good news, not that Boris is abdicating his responsibility (which he is), but that we can now get someone in place as Chair of the MPA who concentrates on policing in London. This should ensure that proper and full attention is given to the issues of station refurbishments, the reducing police numbers in London, partnerships with local councils and also the key issue of tackling violent crime."
The Tory party announced last year that it plans to scrap the MPA altogether if they gain power in May and would have made Mr Johnson the "Sheriff" of London under radical new plans.
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