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GLA'S UNELECTED CABINET CAUSES STRIFE

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London mayor Ken Livingstone has been accused of undermining the role of the capital's assembly by including its me...
London mayor Ken Livingstone has been accused of undermining the role of the capital's assembly by including its members in his cross-party cabinet.

The Conservative group has refused to take up the cabinet member without portfolio role offered by the mayor. It plans instead to take on a strong opposition role.

In a letter to the mayor, Tory group leader Bob Neill says: 'To place an unelected body between yourself and the assembly can only diminish the role of the elected assembly itself. We will not be party to such a structure.'

A source close to the Greater London Assembly agreed Mr Livingstone had 'muddied the waters' between the executive and scrutiny functions of the GLA by including a total of four Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green members in his cabinet.

The cabinet's official role is to provide the mayor with advice on policy and strategy. Collective responsibility will not be enforced and the mayor will take all final decisions.

Former Conservative London mayor candidate Steve Norris is thought likely to take a post on Transport for London.

Who is in the cabinet

The advisory cabinet and their portfolios:

Nicky Gavron (deputy mayor)Spatial development and strategic plannin

Graham TopeHuman rights and equalities

Val ShawcrossChair of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority

Darren JohnsonEnvironment

Judith MayhewCity and business

Glenda JacksonHomelessness

John McDonnellConsultation and local government

George BarlowChair of the London Development Agency

Kumar MurshidRegeneration

Lee JasperRace relations

Diane AbbottWomen and equality

Richard StoneCommunity relations

Sean BaineLondon Voluntary Services Council

Caroline GoodingDisability rights

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