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It's time for transparency; VIEWPOINTS.

PARLIAMENT'S attempt to rule that the Freedom of Information Act could not apply to their expenses and the subsequent scandal only went to prove that the default setting in our politics is secrecy.

That was graphically illustrated when Parliament finally published MPs' expenses with large amounts of black ink censoring information.

All people ask from their politicians is transparency and for them to be straight with us. Our national politicians just don't get it and neither do our local politicians.

In the recent edition of the Capital Times Councillor Nigel Howells wrote a full-page article that included a map showing the council's controversial plans to build a bridge and road in Bute Park. The council was forced to admit the map had been "simplified" and in doing so actually resulted in key information being omitted!

With the controversial council plans to build a secondary school for east Cardiff in a park in Llanrumney, the council was forced to admit two years after it had first announced the plans that it had a vacant school site in St Mellons. This had never been made public. It was revealed that the council was now going to sell the site off to a property developer. The reason given was that the site was "surplus to educational requirements".

That decision was based on council officers' documents that are still held confidentially in County Hall.

We may have the Capital Times and a flash council website but like our national leaders nothing is as it seems and our politicians still seek to hide much from public debate.

Keith Phillip Jones Parracombe Crescent Llanrumney, Cardiff
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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 30, 2009
Words:269
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