Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Local Government Ombudsman corruption, deceit, bias, whitewash and cover ups exposed

This website/blog exposes the truth about the Local Government Ombudsman, the facts they wouldn't want you to know, the underhand tactics they use to whitewash and cover up council maladministration, how they deceive and con the public, fiddle their statistics, and thwart valid complaints. 

The Local Government Ombudsman (LGO) claims to be independent and impartial, but those of us who have experienced the Local Governement Ombudsman in recent years know these claims are a sham and untrue. The Local Government Ombudsman is an old boys school of ex council employees, rotten with corruption to the core, whose main aim is to whitewash and cover up as much council maladministration as it can get away with.

There are three Local Government Ombudsman in England, and were until recently all ex council chief executives. Its investigators and senior staff (who are also mainly ex council employees) use devious tactics to con naive members of the public into believing they are impartial and do not take sides. Astute complainants know otherwise.

Deceit is the main tactic of the Local Government Ombudsman. If you conceal evidence and or misrepresent the facts, a guilty person may be found not guilty, and conversely an innocent person may be found guilty. This is how miscarriages of justice occur. The Local Government Ombudsman use this ruse to cover up maladministration, so that a council officer guilty of maladministration is found not at fault (not guilty), or alternatively guilty of a minor matter by concealing the evidence of a more serious matter.

The Local Government Ombudsman uses it's discretionary power not to investigate a complaint as a way of covering up maladministration and injustice. If the Local Government Ombudsman decline to investigate a complaint they can whitewash the maladministration and injustice. There is no right of appeal against a Local Government Ombudsman's decision not to investigate a complaint other than by way of judicial review. But a judicial review (on a decision not to investigate) is unlikely to be successful as the courts have held in a number of cases that the Local Government Ombudman's discretionary powers are absolute.

The Local Government Ombudsman publishes and report a few cases every year, about 1% of all investigated cases. These reported cases are designed to con the public into believing that they deal with all cases in a like manner. This is not so.

The Local Government Ombudman's investigators are set performance targets to complete cases irrespective of whether they make the right decision or not, or remedy any injustice. Performance targets encourage investigators to use their discretionary powers not to investigate a complaint, close cases finding no maladministration when the converse is true, or reach settlements acceptable to council officers irrespective of whether this remedies the injustice to the complainant.

If the Local Government Ombudsman decides to investigate your complaint, their investigators will try to con you into believing they are carrying out a thorough investigation when in fact they are not. After a few months they may try to close the investigation by finding no maladministration when there is clear evidence to the contrary. They invariably believe what council officers tell them without question, and will peddle council officers lies and deceit. If you pursue your complaint further, they then try to wear you down, deliberately provoke you (if your are abusive to them they will close your case), waste your time, and hope that eventually you will give up.

The Local Government Ombudsman use local settlements (which are not published) to close cases and conceal maladministration from the public. The investigator connives with council officers to agree a remedy so they can close the case. The settlement is not necessarily agreed with the complainant. This ruse encourages council officers to agree the least costly remedy they can get away with, and they can also conceal the maladministration from councillors. The remedy may be no more than an apology.

You may challenge the Local Government Ombudsman's decision only by judicial review on limited grounds, but the costs involved make this option available to the few who qualify for legal aid or have substantial financial resources. This allows the Local Government Ombudsman to continue its corrupt and deceitful practices with impunity.

The Government, Ministers (and some MPs) are aware of the corrupt practices of the Local Government Ombudsman, but do nothing to rectify the matter. In answer to Parliamentary questions Ministers continue to maintain that the Local Government Ombudsman is independent and impartial, that their decisions can be challenged by judicial review, and there are no proposals to reform the Local Government Ombudsman. By implication, the Government condone and are party to the corrupt practices of the Local Government Ombudsman.

The present Government promotes institutionalised corruption by the Local Government Ombudsman and miscarriages of justice. Whilst this situation prevails complainants will continue to suffer injustice, council services will not improve, and inept council officers can walk away with their reputations intact knowing that the Local Government Ombudsman is no more than a toothless tiger, protected by a Government in denial of the truth.

The three wise monkeys are a pictorial maxim. Together they embody the proverbial principle to "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil". The phrase is often used to refer to those who deal with impropriety by looking the other way, refusing to acknowledge it, or feigning ignorance.

Three wise monkeys