Reform group in bid to control City of London


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The Independent Online

A group of politicians, clergy and former members of the Occupy London movement have launched a bid to take control of the body which governs London’s financial district.

The group will support a host of candidates standing for election to the City of London Corporation’s (CoLC) main decision-making body, the Common Council, early next year on a ticket of radical reform of the secretive organisation.

Members of the City Reform Group, who include the Conservative MP David Davis and the former Canon Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral Giles Fraser, want to see greater transparency in the CoLC. They have promised to publish all of its financial secrets, should their supporters gain an electoral foothold in March.

“The City of London Corporation certainly needs to be reclaimed by the people. It is a public authority and it should be more for the common good. There is a question about it masquerading as a public body but lobbying for private interest. It is very important that it publishes its accounts in full,” Dr Fraser said this week.

David Davis said  the campaign was not about increasing regulation imposed on the City or on the Corporation but making it run more efficiently.

A spokesman for the CoLC said: “We favour of people being actively engaged in the elections and we  hope a lot of people will come out and vote.

“Our spending is published in detail and all that we do is debated fully and is the subject of reports, almost all of which are published.”

Common Councillors are elected by a combination of local residents and businesses.