We’re nearly a week on, now, from the bizarre latest clash in the Southend UKIP civil war, and I’m not entirely sure what we’ve learnt.
I did say, back when there appeared to be some sort of reconciliation between Cllrs Moyies and Waterworth, the leaders of the two “factions”, that it wasn’t over. I am delighted to have been vindicated.
The thing is, this isn’t just a battle between egos, but a fight for the soul of UKIP in Southend. I have long suspected that the party’s surge (Isn’t that word trademarked by the Green Party? -Ed) in popularity has brought into the fold a lot of, shall we say, less savoury folks. It would explain how UKIP members in Rochford & Southend East managed to take a no brainer like Moyies vs Waterworth and still get it wrong.
No, it comes down, for my money, to Moyies being “too moderate” for the new UKIP. And my little birds are bringing me suggestions that this is exactly the case.
The mutually-assured destruction of Southend UKIP’s civil war continues, with group leader James Moyies (who was already suspended) expelled by UKIP High Command from the party:
Since their suspension, the four remaining councillors (Moyies, Callaghan, Davies and Burling) have still been describing themselves as the UKIP group on the council, and at the last council meeting they stripped Floyd Waterworth of all committee positions.
No word on whether the other three councillors have been expelled, but if they haven’t then they are facing a choice of whether to bend the knee to Waterworth, or to follow their defeated leader into exile, perhaps with the Independent
Pretty shoddy stuff from UKIP, if that’s true.
Continuing my apparent series of blogs on local would-be politicians with slightly questionable geographic awareness, enter Brian Otridge.
Brian is the UKIP candidate for Southend West, and is hoping against all electoral likelihood to topple that tireless dodger of local journalists and champion against cake, David Amess.
Electoral mathematics aside, one thing Brian might like to do some when before May 7th is figure out exactly where it is he is standing for election.
Apparently taking his cue from fellow UKIP councillor (Well, maybe — it’s all gone a bit People’s Front of Judea with Southend UKIP -Ed) Lawrence Davies, Floyd Waterworth disappeared at last night’s vote on the Southend Borough Council budget for 2015/16.
He was definitely there early on, sitting with an extremely glum look on his face whilst his group leader (Well, probably not -Ed) made a speech.
I guess staying and representing the people of Blenheim Park ward was too much to ask, for the man who wants to be the next MP for Rochford & Southend East…