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Southwark cabinet reshuffle announced

Southwark Council's Labour leader Peter John has announced his post-election cabinet reshuffle.

Cllr Peter John
Cllr Peter John

The number of cabinet members has been increased from nine to 10, with two councillors sharing one portfolio.

Three new members have joined the cabinet, including Cllr Mark Williams, who served as deputy cabinet member for private rented sector last year and will now lead on regeneration, planning and transport, and councillors Michael Situ and Darren Merrill, who will share responsibility for environment, recycling, community safety and volunteering.

Cllr Situ and Cllr Merrill will each receive half of a cabinet member's normal allowance of around 33,000.

"The recent election results were a resounding endorsement of what Labour has done in Southwark over the last four years and I am confident that this cabinet, which includes a mix of new and experienced members, will continue to build on that," said Cllr Peter John.

"We are facing an extremely challenging period in Southwark, but I am optimistic that this great team can deliver our ambitious manifesto and pledges over the next twelve months."

• Cllr Ian Wingfield – Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Communities, Employment & Business

• Cllr Fiona Colley – Cabinet Member for Finance, Strategy and Performance

• Cllr Dora Dixon-Fyle – Cabinet Member for Adult Care, Arts and Culture

• Cllr Barrie Hargrove – Cabinet Member for Public Health, Parks and Leisure

• Cllr Mark Williams – Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Planning and Transport

• Cllr Victoria Mills – Cabinet Member for Children and Schools

• Cllr Richard Livingstone – Cabinet Member for Housing

• Cllr Darren Merrill – Cabinet Member for Environment, Recycling, Community Safety & Volunteering (Environment & Recycling)

• Cllr Michael Situ – Cabinet Member for Environment, Recycling, Community Safety & Volunteering (Community Safety & Volunteering)

Southwark's Lib Dem group – which has shrunk from 25 to 13 councillors following last month's elections – has complained that Labour is likely to impose one of its own councillors as chair of the cross-party overview & scrutiny committee.

"The overview & scrutiny committee has always been chaired by an opposition councillor, which means it isn't afraid to ask tough questions when things go wrong," said Cllr Anood Al-Samerai, leader of the Lib Dem group.

"It was predictable that Labour would try to take more committee places for their own members, but this is essentially awarding themselves a 'get out of jail free' card they can use to stop their decisions being put under the spotlight.

"Are Labour councillors really going to dare question their own cabinet members about botched projects like the refurbishment of Draper House, or the controversial regeneration of Peckham Rye station?"

• Lambeth's new-look cabinet line-up was announced last week.

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