London council chief quits after polling station blunder


Sealed ballot boxes containing voting slips wait to be processed at a count center in north London on May 6, 2016. ©AFP

The chief executive of Barnet Council in north London has stepped down after a blunder made many people in the borough unable to vote in “Super Thursday” elections.
Andrew Travers left his position on Monday by “mutual agreement” after the error.
The blunder with the electoral registrations left thousands of people unable to cast their ballots in the local and mayoral elections in all 155 polling stations in Barnet on Thursday.
One of the Mayoral candidates lodged a formal complaint with the council.
The council said it launched an independent investigation into the blunder.
“Following the events during the morning of Thursday’s elections, it has been decided, by mutual agreement, that Andrew Travers, chief executive, will leave the council,” a council spokesman said.
Travers had “made a valuable contribution to the council during his three and half years as chief executive,” he added.
The investigation will conclude later this month and the findings will be presented publicly to the General Functions Committee.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan ©AFP

The council will look at the “appropriateness” of arrangements in place for the EU Referendum in June.
The council also said that deputy chief executive John Hooton will temporarily take over the position.
People across the voted in a number of elections for mayors, councilors, assembly members and police commissioners. They elected officials for 2,700 seats in local councils.
Labour Party candidate Sadiq Khan became the first Muslim elected mayor of London. Khan, the son of a Pakistani bus driver and a seamstress, scored a resounding victory over his Conservative rival, billionaire Zac Goldsmith.

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