According to the Evening Standard, the post of Minister for London has been quietly abolished by the new Government. The argument is that there is not going to be a Government Office for London and that as London has an elected Mayor, it no longer needs its own Minister.
However, there are three Cabinet Ministers who have territorial responsibilities for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – all parts of the United Kingdom with their own devolved administrations and elected leaderships.
It is worth reminding the Coalition that London has a population greater than that of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland combined and, as the key driver of the UK economy, is of more importance to the country as a whole than Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland put together.
London needs and deserves its own unique voice within the central Government machine.
According to the Standard:
“Ironically, at the same time as abolishing the post, Mr Cameron has decided to boost other cities across the country with their own “city minister”.”
So those other cities matter more to the Prime Minister than London.
Is it because his school “friend” Boris Johnson is the Mayor that London has been snubbed in this way?
Of course, one solution would be to give the Mayor of London a peerage and put him in the Cabinet as Minister for London.
And that would solve another problem: it would stop all this talk that Boris Johnson is pursuing a hidden agenda of toppling David Cameron from the Conservative Party Leadership, as he couldn’t lead the Conservatives from the Lords.
The more I think about it, the more it’s a no-brainer.