Liberal Democrat councillors in Wokingham Borough have been caught out trying to take credit for an initiative devised under the previous Conservative administration to support people from Hong Kong.
A healthcare webinar in Cantonese launched in 2021, designed to provide information on how to navigate local healthcare, was a finalist for best digital initiative at the Public Health Awards 2023.
The Liberal Democrat Executive Member for Health, Wellbeing and Adult Services praised the recognition of the scheme as a “real testament to the great work the Council has been doing with its partners”.
However, he failed to mention that the project happened when the Conservatives ran Wokingham Borough Council, not under the current Liberal Democrat leadership.
In addition, Liberal Democrat councillor David Hare omitted any reference to the officers whose hard work played such an important part of reaching the final stages for the award.
Cllr Phil Cunnington, Conservative Shadow Executive Member for Health and Wellbeing said:
“It must have been difficult for any Hong Kong people who chose to relocate to the UK to escape political repression from China. Work by the Council to make it easier to break through the language barrier to access important services was vital to helping these people settle into the Borough.
“It’s very kind of the Liberal Democrats to lavish such high praise on the previous Conservative administration, and I agree that the Council being a finalist is a true recognition of the work we did in office. I hope he can also find the time to congratulate the officers whose commitment made this project possible. I’m sure he wouldn’t want residents to think that he and the rest of the Liberal Democrats were trying to take credit for an initiative that had nothing to do with them.”
Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, Leader of the Conservative Group, said;
“Over the last year Wokingham Borough Council has been nominated for or won a string of awards all for projects undertaken by the previous Conservative administration including for our regeneration of Wokingham town centre and for the Carnival Hub.
“Together these awards demonstrate our success in delivering big ideas that have had significant benefits to our residents.”
The award winning webinar can be viewed on YouTube - link at top of page.