With great disappointment John Pye, who was to be the Conservative Police Commissioner candidate in Cambridgeshire has stood down. This time nothing at all to do with minor criminal convictions 40 years ago.
This is all to do with the Conservatives drive to politicise the police force and control those who run it.
Originally John Pye was going to be the Conservative Party candidate in Cambridgeshire but was not a Conservative party member. At first this was described as “enlightened”, a political party being prepared to support a very good independent candidate. The period of enlightenment in the Conservative party only lasted about a month as it became clear that when he said he was not going to join the party he meant it.
His refusal to join the Conservatives because he ‘ believes firmly that the governance of policing must be impartial and non political’ has put him at loggerheads with the party; they clearly thought that in due course he would simply bow to the pressure and join the them. Forcing him out when he refused to do so does not sit well either with Conservative’s commitment to the Oath the Police Commissioner will have to take on impartiality.
Mr Pye obviously has backbone and rather than stand under a political flag and compromise his values, has decided to stand down as the Conservative party candidate.
A man of principle — perhaps that does not sit too well either with our political parties who seek to politicise the police. Despite assurances to the contrary they seem to want influence over those who run it and if they disagree they will in effect deselect them.