That bastion of reliable and trustworthy news, the Sunday Express, says:

On Friday the mayor said Mr Lewis would be reinstated if he was cleared by an inquiry into the allegations led by former chief prisons inspector Martin Narey.

But last night City Hall sources said the inquiry would be dropped. A source said: “He wants to clear his name and we would like that to happen, but now he has resigned it is not appropriate to spend taxpayers’ money on an inquiry.”

Is this news? It is to me.

It was always debatable whether an inquiry into so recent an appointment by the Conservatives should have been publicly funded anyway, but this sounds like a convenient way to sweep the whole thing under the carpet and hope everyone moves on.

Indeed, it could also be suggested that it sounds like they’d lost their confidence in the inquiry coming out with a result they liked…

Update: as mentioned in the comments, George Osborne said on this morning’s Andrew Marr Show that the inquiry was still going ahead. The Tory Troll’s second comment here sets out several possible reasons why there appear to be different messages coming from different parts of the Conservative party.

In fact, it basically sounds like the Tories are in disarray – but don’t expect any right-leaning blog-dwellers to stand for it when the BBC allows the Labour party to point this out. (I forget where I was reading rabid “BBC left-wing conspiracy” comments yesterday when that story was high on their news agenda, so I can’t link back to them.)

Another update: aha, it was George Osborne, not the Sunday Express, who didn’t know what he was talking about. Wireman points out that Dave Hill has just said:

UPDATE, 11.54 a.m.: A spokesman for the mayor has just confirmed that Martin Narey has indeed been “stood down.”

So we’ll never know which allegations were true and which weren’t. As I said originally, you have to wonder if they were unconfident about what would have been concluded by Mr. Narey.

Given that Boris had said he’d reappoint Lewis if the inquiry cleared him of wrongdoing, I think we can safely say he won’t be reappointed.

Update (From Ben): The inquiry has been dropped, and a protracted period of amnesia will commence immediately.

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19 Responses to Ray Lewis inquiry dropped? (Yes)

  1. Tory Troll says:

    Hang on. George Osbourne just said that the inquiry will be happening. Shall we take that as a promise?

  2. Was that on the Andrew Marr show? I’m just watching a recording of it so I guess I’ll see that soon.

    If it is a promise, the only conclusion we’ll be able to draw is that the Sunday Express is not a reliable source of news. So I think it probably is a promise.

  3. Tory Troll says:

    I doubt the Express unreliable as it is, would have invented that quote so either:

    a) The Tories haven’t quite worked out who is in charge and so different people are telling different interviewers different things
    b)Cameron wants an inquiry and Boris doesn’t
    c)There will be an investigation but it won’t be paid for by the public
    d)Osborne was just badly briefed and didn’t know the latest version of reality as prescribed by head office
    e)It’s all just a complete shambles and no-one has a clue what’s going on.

    Hopefully they will have worked it all out by the time the inquiry is due to start on Tuesday. Someone there might get round to telling Narey about it as well. I’m sure he would quite like to know if he can get on with his life or not.

  4. Wireman says:

    Dave Hill says the inquiry has been “stood down”.

  5. [...] Boris Watch) Posted on July 7th, 2008 at 8:55 [...]

  6. [...] discovered that even the Express gets things right sometimes, I’m going to base this post on the assumption that the following two statments from the [...]

  7. [...] good time, then, to cancel the investigation. “Yet for a crusader, Lewis left himself absurdly open to attack. In politics, the kind of [...]

  8. Chunters says:

    For those of us who live and pay our taxes in London this is surely good news, after all it would be us who would have to foot the bill for the enquiry?

    BTW Ray Lewis buried by the media in a week tops, but with regard to Lee Jasper the difference between the two is that Jasper was found to have mishandled financial matters (and still did not resign) and only went after sexually charged emails were produced. It took months, if not years, for the media to wake up to Jasper.

  9. BenSix says:

    “For those of us who live and pay our taxes in London this is surely good news, after all it would be us who would have to foot the bill for the enquiry?”
    That may be true, Chunters, but what causes consternation isn’t merely Lewis’s alleged actions or dishonesty, but the fact that City Hall were completely oblivious to them, both when he was being employed and while he was in employment. Such incompetence is worth investigating, but signs suggest that they are being whitewashed in order to avoid further embarrassment.

  10. Chunters says:

    “Lewis’s alleged actions or dishonesty, but the fact that City Hall were completely oblivious to them”

    ….and Ken wasn’t with regard to Jasper.

    Jasper is a crook and yes let him sue me for that statement, but he wouldn’t of course.

  11. BenSix says:

    “….and Ken wasn’t with regard to Jasper.”
    A bit of a non sequitur, I’m afraid.
    “Jasper is a crook and yes let him sue me for that statement, but he wouldn’t of course.”
    Lee Jasper posted on Pickled Politics quite recently, interestingly enough, but I’m not sure that he cares enough to pursue every commenter that calls him a crook through the courts.

  12. Mr Jasper says:

    Dear Chunters

    Had your post pointed out to me. If you supply me with your personal details I will be more than happy to take up your kind offer.

  13. BenSix says:

    Mr Jasper,
    If you wish to stop these rather arrogantly asserted comments then would it not be more effective to pursue the originators of the claims – The Evening Standard – instead of faintly pompous blog commenters?
    Nevertheless, you are within your rights and we shall see if Chunters arrives here once more to support his/her assertion. Otherwise, of course, the comment can be deleted.

  14. Blimey, one day I go out and Ray Lewis resigns; a few days later I go out and Lee Jasper shows up on one of my blog posts. I really am going to have to stop going out.

    I think Chunters should be very careful what (s)he says. As far as I’m aware there’s *still* been no evidence offered of any personal wrongdoing (other than the foolish sexual remarks) by Jasper. Whereas with Lewis the lies were in the full glare of the media spotlight and were easily exposed.

    Of course no evidence has yet been offered of any of the countless allegations against Lewis so I’m reserving judgement on those in the same way I’m reserving judgement on Jasper.

    If Jasper is, as Chunters suggests, “a crook”, I assume the police will step in and arrest him at some point, since they’re conducting various investigations into the alleged wrongdoing at the LDA.

    Presumably if all the police investigations close without charges, Chunters will issue a public apology (just after Andrew Gilligan’s).

  15. ‘The Money Was Just Resting In My Account, Dougal’

    From last week’s Mail on Sunday.

    “He was yesterday facing claims that during a posting to the Caribbean island of Grenada in 1997 he organised a charity raffle but failed to give the first prize – a car – to the winner. One of his parishioners there came forward, saying the holder of the winning ticket never received the prize.”

    I only hope that the writers of ‘Father Ted’ (‘Think Fast Father Ted’ Series 2 8 March 1996 – 10 May 1996) will not be held responsible in any way for the alleged villainies of Ray Lewis, charismatic hero of brand new London Mayor, Boris Johnson and Tory leader, David Cameron, both of whom saw no reason to explore the past of a man with such lantern-jawed get-up-and-go and other public school business cliches.

    “Realising that they can’t give the borrowed car away, Ted and Dougal rig the raffle in order for them to win and return the car. The plan involves Ted, as the emcee, calling the number 11. This number will be Dougal’s. On the day of the event, Ted and Dougal work feverishly …”" etc etc

    with hilarious consequences. You get the general idea. If there’s a better Father Ted imitation doing the rounds, I’d like to hear about it.

  16. Outside Left says:

    As much as I would like to see one of Team Boris taken to the cleaners, all of Ray Lewis’s alleged misdemeanours pre-dated his deputy-mayoralty. However, that is no excuse for the police not to investigate…

  17. [...] rescue here, as  on the evening of 14th June No2Ken sent me a message defending Boris’s new old friend Ray Lewis, whose hypocritical re-appointment by Boris (of which more later) came out that [...]

  18. [...] our rescue here, as  on the evening of 14th June No2Ken sent me a message defending Boris’s new old friend Ray Lewis, whose hypocritical re-appointment by Boris (of which more later) came out that [...]

  19. [...] conveniently for Boris, that inquiry into Lewis’ affairs was dropped. And now the Tories are trying to bring him back into their [...]

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