Saturday, 29 December 2012

UBS-Managed Council Pension Fund Loses £10 Million In Seven Years

In March 2009 Katherine Barney of the Evening Standard reported that "Havering Council which may have lost £12.5million of tax payers' money in the Icelandic banking crisis is accused of negligence in a damning government report published today. Havering council, which has six members of staff earning more than £100,000, is among seven local authorities heavily criticised by the Audit Commission for depositing money in the banks after their credit rating had fallen."

Council Leader Michael White
 In December 2012 reporter Ian Weinfass of the Romford Recorder reports yet more concern about Havering Council. Yet again the culture of Conservative-dominated Havering Council is called into serious question with the revelation by the paper (Page 3, 28/12/12) that a council pension fund managed by UBS has lost £10m in seven years. The paper states "The (UBS) fund ... has seen £33m invested in it since 2005, but in November 2012 its values was just £23m".  Havering Council has thus frittered away £22.5m of tax payers money in only three years, and that it is only the money we actually know about,  it doesn't include council contracts or property development consultancy. Havering Council Leader Michael White, pictured left, seems unshaken by these events - with council elections due in 2014 the people of Havering will have a chance to give a verdict on Mr White and his colleagues. 

Opposition Leader Clarence Barratt
Council opposition leader Clarence Barratt, Residents Association, said in the Recorder  "at least with the £12.5m (council loss) deposited in Icelandic Banks there was an element of surprise, but this investment has deteriorated over a number of years".  Mr Barratt added "We shall be asking for a review of the investment strategy and also of the advice given to make sure we are not throwing good money after bad".

The "strangeness" of UBS is not news,  the company has been at the centre of several major city scandals in recent times.  UBS had to pay a record-breaking fine of $1.5bn for manipulating the LIBOR rate, the Financial Times (ft.com 20/12/12) reports that "Record UBS fine unlikely to be the end ... Tom Hayes the former UBS trader made at least $260m in three years .. some reaped by the manipulating the yen-dominated LIBOR." The findings were released by the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission, see online ft.com article below
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/36712a2a-4ad0-11e2-9650-00144feab49a.html#axzz2GQrtF3wP

UBS was accused of "breath-taking hypocrisy" by the UK Financial Services Authority reports ft.com (12/12/11) see online ft.com article below
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/6f5d1eee-24c4-11e1-ac4b-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2GQrtF3wP

UBS trader Kweku Adoboli was prosecuted for $2.3bn in unauthorised trading losses and UBS cut 500 jobs as a result said UBS Chief Financial Offcer Tom Naratil on a video-link from New York transmitted to Adoboli's criminal trial in London.  see articles below
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-20142549
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/b820d59e-16e0-11e2-8989-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2GQrtF3wP

The silence of Romford MP Andrew Rosindell, Upminster MP Angela Watkinson and Council Leader Michael White over the lost council funds described above and other long-standing concerns about council contracts and development consultancy is deafening.  It was not long ago that Havering Council Leader Michael White worked for PITO (Police Information Technology Organisation) and this closeness to the police must the source of his apparent confidence - the facts however seem to suggest that Mr White should be explaining himself and his council cabinet in some detail.  Mr White is not the only Havering Councillor to develop close contact with the police, Councillor Peter Gardner also seems to relish police work - I wonder why such a specific closeness to one area of local government concern is necessary ?

Councillor Roger Ramsey 
Current council finance chief Roger Ramsey is reported in the Romford Recorder as saying ".... This (loss) has been offset by £6m in rental income from the manager, which owns office and retail units across the country".  If only the city giant UBS, its "rocket scientists" and billions of the best computing technology could cover their losses as easily.  Do you think there is more to it Mr Ramsey ? You are a lawyer after all.

Do you have complete confidence in Havering Council ? No ? Then why not cast your vote in the 2014 council elections to the best chance non-conservative candidate in every council ward and remove as many Conservatives as we can.  If we win we can invite a team of professionals to conduct a root-and-branch investigation of council finances over the past thirty years right back to Margaret Thatcher's first election win.

see Romford Recorder article at
http://www.romfordrecorder.co.uk/news/havering_council_pension_fund_loses_10m_in_seven_years_1_1753714

Read more about Havering council including reports of a failed dirty tricks campaign involving firearms, youth offenders and drugs to close Havering College of Further Education
http://haveringwitness.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/inverse-sectarian-injustice.html

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Chase Cross Comprehensive and 1970s Rotten Irish Apples

Bower Park School - We wish them great success
Today Bower Park Secondary School, Chase Cross, Romford is an improving school with increasingly impressive exam results and may they go from strength to strength in their bid to shake off the "lower-class" social rank the school was given many years ago by the monarchist Romford Conservative Party. In recent times there have been great improvements but I hope the school leadership, staff and pupils are the people to take the full credit for the great progress they have made and NOT the hangers-on from the Conservative Party past or present.  Romford Conservative Party and their colleagues in other parts of the London Borough of Havering have a great deal to answer for. Please read on to find out why this is very important to us indeed.

The London Borough of Havering is an area with an unusually high support for the Royal Family as indicated by the monarchist Conservative MP for Romford, Andrew Rosindell. The "posher" parts of Havering - Emerson Park, Upminster and Hornchurch have a strong association with Freemasonry,  the RAF, and several higher status schools and churches.  The Catholic community have a strong presence in the posher parts of Havering with "higher-status" primary and secondary schools. Ordinary British white working class were historically confined to the "lower-class" areas of Romford. Many older residents of Romford express huge surprise at the Asian and Black pupils who now routinely attend the "posher" schools of Havering such as Coopers Coborn, Royal Liberty and Campion - in their day if they even went near those schools a police officer would turn up assuming they were going to cause trouble.     

The Havering Witness remembers a time when the Conservative Party regarded our old school as nothing but a source of trouble attended by "scum" to be controlled.  In those days it was common-place for the Conservative Party to treat teachers as the whipping boy for all social ills  at local and national levels of government. I attended this school when it was called Chase Cross Comprehensive School back in the 1970s. It was a VERY different to the Bower Park of today. The school was used as a dumping ground for "trouble" families by the Conservative controlled council and their close confidantes in the local police force - a force constantly criticised for their mishandling of some very serious issues connected to  Irish families and the deeply ironic protection of the reputation of the relatively well-to-do Irish Catholic community looking down on ordinary working class British people.

Romford FC including PE teacher goalkeeper Chris Lighfoot
In the 1970s a number of Irish Catholic families were found to have arms dumps in their homes and were also suspected of gathering information about the former secret nuclear bunker at Kelvedon Hatch near Brentwood. (http://www.secretnuclearbunker.com/)

In addition they are suspected of  agitation in local politics such as the future of  Brooklands, the former home of Romford Town FC and the site of several arson attacks in the fight for its survival. It is strongly suspected that  stadium closed because the local Irish Catholic community thought that the British culture of Romford FC challenged their predominant status.  The local Conservative Party / Royalist establishment  (High-church "Norman" catholics) wanted the football stadium shut and the local catholic community to feel "unchallenged".  Ordinary British people were, as usual, betrayed by high society being more concerned about other groups. The Irish families involved in the arms store are known to have attended  St. Patricks Primary School, Collier Row and St. Mary Mother of God Primary School, Hornchurch - the reputations of these schools were not affected. 


The local Conservatives (including some Conservative Party-supporting "spy" families from the relatively up-market Rise Park estate whose children attended the school) are said to have been much amused by the tensions they were creating and national senior Conservative figures continued to make regular negative remarks about  teachers and problem schools generally. Chase Cross teachers  and pupils became the hate target of a sniping campaign which also made sure that no pupil from Chase Cross would ever enter the professions due to the perpetual stream of hate around them.

The Conservative Party campaign to damage our old school went up a gear when the local scouts became involved in trying to rubbish the school's teaching staff.  The local scouts (helped by their Conservative contacts) joined in the convenient teacher-hating by feeding teachers and pupils with secret information about the secret nuclear bunker near Brentwood. The scouts took concealed tape recorders into the school and perpetually bothered staff and pupils with annoying questions about their views on nuclear war in order to obtain "evidence".  No prosecution of the misuse of secret information under the Officials Secret Act was ever brought. In contrast incriminated teachers Mr Sumner (Maths / Computing / Chess) and Ms Lawrence (English / Geography) who caught scouts with tape recorders in class (Steven Haberman was one pupil caught with a tape recorder and concealed weapons) become the targets of a hate campaign due to political pressures applied to the school. No action was taken by the Scout Association against its members and the school and its teachers were blamed instead. I recently asked Bear Grylls - the Chief Scout "super-hero" to take some action but never received a reply.  (We also are told that a Mr Scott of Upminster knows about the scouts involved, Mr Scott is also a past / present member of the Havering Branch of the British Diabetic Association along with his Jaguar car owners club friends.)

Senior teacher Douglas Adey made sure that the Irish Catholic children obtained secure quality employment at Ford Motor Company, Midland Bank and other sought-after jobs in the local area whilst  the best interests of the children of innocent British families were simply ignored. The blaming of the rest of us, the innocent British community of Chase Cross School, continues today.  Detractors of the school are thought to discuss policing "battles" of old at their black tie dinners and numerous back-slapping events which there never seems to be any shortage of unlike plain vanilla justice.  They also appear to take some credit for the growing success of the school today - a grotesque injustice in itself when you read the real history of the school and the hate campaign directed at it for many years.

It was Mr William Gore, the Headmaster, that steered the school through these very troubled times and was himself a target of the haters for his great efforts in putting a good teaching staff together in these very difficult circumstances. Mr Gore was a glider pilot in the allied invasion of Europe although you would not know it from the absurd child-like school haters who did little but cite "patriotism" as the reason for their actions. I thought that Mr Gore was a wise headmaster and detractors on his own teaching staff like Dennis Elgie (French) should have shown him more respect and loyalty.

The Unhelpful Andrew Rosindell MP
At the time of the Irish issues described above Mr Rosindell was himself a schoolboy, however,  later as a young Havering Councillor he was presumably mentored by the same people.  Havering Council Conservative veterans include councillors Peter Gardner, Eric Munday and Roger Ramsey. I'm sure that the Romford Recorder newspaper would welcome a full description of these events and the councillors involvement in them including the issue of the closure of Romford Town FC (Boro') home ground Brooklands and the relationship with the paper's editor Roy Mills.

I would have thought that Mr Rosindell himself is now in a position to clarify these matters. A much valued observer of these events and a font of local knowledge was the sadly deceased Romford Recorder journalist Roy Weal who was a Boro' fan himself. I had the privilege of having a few chats with Roy Weal in the Golden Lion. Mr Gardner has also been named by witnesses we won't disclose as being involved in a failed "dirty tricks" campaign to close Havering College in Ardleigh Green, Hornchurch in the late 1970s / early 80s. Many veterans of local Havering politics have a view that Mr Gardner is "above the law " and is "too close to the police". 

For a time in the 1980s Mr Gardner deputised for the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Havering Brian Batt. The scouts caught red-handed illegally tape recording teachers in class at Chase Cross Comprehensive always seem to mention Mr Batt  as having knowledge of these events - did Mr Gardner ? Scoutmasters and scouts did NOT have the security clearance to know the full function of the former secret nuclear bunker in Brentwood as a Regional Government Headquarters potentially accommodating 600 personnel in the event of a nuclear, biological or chemical warhead missile attack.

No prosecution of these security breaches ever occured and the incrimination of innocent teachers and pupils was NEVER investigated by the police.  You would never know that the Official Secrets Act was such a casual arrangement from all the talk we hear about the importance of national security from the Conservative Party - the reality of the informal immunity to prosecution that the Romford Conservative Party enjoys is in stark contrast to the "hard line" speeches of Mr Rosindell in parliament. 

The underhand political tactics that Bower Park School was subjected to in the 1970s / 80s were also used elsewhere in the London Borough of Havering - please use the link below to read how Havering College of Further Education was also subjected to a "dirty-tricks" campaign.

Please also read http://haveringwitness.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/inverse-sectarian-injustice.html