NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE
Just over two week after the Celtic League suggested, in the wake of the decision of Chris Thomas MHK to quit the Office of Fair trading, that others might follow his lead another junior Departmental figure has ‘jumped ship’.
Juan Turner MLC has quit (or been fired) from DOI; it seems to be a bit of both.
Turners departure came as surprise in a week that had already seen a senior CEO (less than a year in the job) in the flagship Department of Health and social Care resign for ‘personal reasons’.
Turner also doesn’t seem to be going quietly: he has already indicated that he was kept in the dark about the toxic harbour silt operation at Peel that stoked a degree of controversy in the west of the Isle of Man, and still rumbles on, but his most telling statement was ‘I certainly don’t like the way they have been treating the public’ (see link).
Well it has been clear for some time that ‘the public’ don’t like it either. What is unclear is if Turner’s remarks were specific to the department he was with (Infrastructure) or government generally.
When Chris Thomas MHK quit we said:
“Chris Thomas’s decision may well be motivated by deeply held convictions but I would wager some of his colleagues of a less altruistic bent will also be departing their positions, and ‘heading for the beaches’ in coming months.”
That assumption was predicated on the fact that as we put it:
“Being seen as too close to what is perhaps one of the most unpopular governments of recent years is obviously not ‘pole position’ as an election looms.”
However, that is what makes the Turner resignation all the more interesting (and perhaps alarming for government) in that Turner as an MLC is not faced with the prospect of electoral ‘Armageddon’ as MLCs are not popularly elected.
It’s one thing for those uneasy about their future electoral chances to distance themselves from the Manx Government but when those in a more secure position exit the political tectonic plates are really starting to shift.
That ‘unpopular government’ jibe is starting to gain traction!
J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)
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