Councillor appeals to stay in Portsmouth Tory party

PLEA Cllr Malcolm Hey
PLEA Cllr Malcolm Hey
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OUTSPOKEN Tory councillor Malcolm Hey has asked the central Conservative Party board to overturn the decision to deselect him.

The Copnor ward representative said he has contacted the party’s highest decision-making body because he believes Portsmouth’s opposition group has treated him unfairly.

But the city’s Tory party, which also voted to remove the whip from Cllr Hey after he chose to stand as an independent in the elections on May 3, maintained that the decision not to select him for re-election was justified.

In a statement group leader Simon Bosher said: ‘We took the decision not to reselect Cllr Hey because his attendance at meetings and standards of behaviour fell way below the standard we would expect from a Conservative Party councillor.’

Cllr Hey also courted controversy last year when he refused to stay in the council chamber for a Muslim prayer.

He said: ‘I feel that I have been treated very unfairly by a small group within the local party and I hope the board will help me put that right.’

Previously The News reported that Cllr Hey blamed living and working in Gosport for his low attendance at meetings. This was incorrect; he works in Gosport but lives in Hilsea in Portsmouth.