This Tape Should Have Self Destructed In 5 Seconds

By Ed_ScottishFitba
Last updated : 19 August 2002

New plans for Dons home
Although Austria and Switzerland may have the troubles as far as EURO2008 is concerned, due to football violence, they are not alone. Scotland have not bashed some heads in but the use of some tape has created an unfortunate political row up in Aberdeen. With the planning application to be discussed by the full Council on Wednesday the councillor representing Kingswells (where the ground is to be built) has resigned. The local Labour councillor, David Maitland, had been one of the strongest supporters of Aberdeen FC's proposals but he will not feature in any further discussions on the project as he has resigned. He had to resign after Liberal Democrat Matthew Duncan secretly taped a conversation with Maitland where he allegedly offered to do a deal over voting on the planning application with an opposition councillor.

That is not the end of the affair. Now Duncan will be the subject of an investigation over taping the exchange without his opponents (Maitland) knowledge. The taping could backfire and prove to be a big embarrassment to the Liberal Democrats as Councillor Duncan also works as a political assistant to MSP Mike Rumbles. Mike Rumbles just happens to be the chairman of the Scottish Parliament's standards committee. The Kingswells ward is a marginal seat and the Labour group need to hold onto it in the forthcoming by-election (caused by Maitlands's resignation) to retain control of the Council.

Council planning officers and the Planning Committee have already agreed to Aberdeen FC's proposals for their new 30,000-seat stadium and community sports complex. If the full Aberdeen City Council also approves the scheme, the proposals will be passed to Scottish Executive ministers to have the final say on the outline planning plan. I always said you should not mix football with politics!

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