Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Glasgow 2014 chief Executive John Scott is forced to resign after breaching strict rules on potential conflicts of interest, sackable offence
Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games chief executive has resigned after he admitted failing to declare an offer he received from a potential supplier.
One of the things which should be stamped out in public life is hospitality for council officers and people like John Scott in NGOs.
John Scott earned£180,000-a-year.
He resigned from his post yesterday after breaching strict rules on potential conflicts of interest set out in the Glasgow 2014 committee’s gifts and gratuities policy.
And it seems that plod has turned up on the premises as Strathclyde Police will today discuss the specific circumstances of Mr Scott’s departure with the 2014 organising committee.
So far the Commonwealth Committee has refused to reveal the identity of the supplier or what was offered.
And the current joke is their refusal is based on on the grounds they are “private and commercially sensitive”.
Christopher Mason, a Liberal Democrat member of Glasgow City Council said:
“The public is entitled to know exactly what is meant by the word ‘offer’ in the press release.”
Mason is 100% right what was on offer and was it special?
It is said that this was a significant breach of the rules.
Earlier, Glasgow 2014 chairman Lord Smith said:
“John Scott has made an important contribution to the planning of what we believe will be an outstanding Games. The board has accepted his resignation for an error of judgment in accepting, and not declaring, an offer from one of Glasgow 2014’s potential suppliers, in breach of the organising committee’s strict gifts and gratuities policy. I know he deeply regrets this mistake and this was a job he loved. It is a measure of the man that he has put the values and reputation of the organising committee ahead of his own at this time.”
And lets us also remember, he got caught.
Chief operating officer David Grevemberg is now steadying the ship.
Former colleagues yesterday insisted that, although Mr Scott was guilty of a sackable offence, his error had not been “huge”.
Huge enough to get the bullet and significant enough to have the Police sniffing around, so turn it up.
In a previous life, Mr Scott had been British sport’s anti-doping czar then he became chief executive of the Glasgow 2014 organising committee.
A post he held for more than three years.
He was a board member for the 2002 Games in Manchester and was previously a UK Government adviser on the 2012 London Olympics.
That means he is on what I describe as ‘the circuit’.
Board members were informed last week but were kept in the dark about what would be discussed until minutes before.
A Glasgow 2014 spokeswoman said:
“It was a significant breach of the rules. Significant enough to lose a job over not trivial, but not huge either. We feel clear on why he resigned but will not be commenting. It is private and commercially sensitive information. The point of having these rules is to be open and transparent.”
They are so open and transparent they aren’t telling!
A spokesman for Glasgow City Council’s opposition SNP group said:
“We would expect the 2014 organising committee would be revealing the specific reasons for Mr Scott’s departure on the basis that the event is entirely publicly funded.”
Commonwealth Games minister Shona Robison said:
“The reputation and integrity of our Games is paramount and to that end I believe Mr Scott has done the right and principled thing in stepping down.”
Archie Graham, Glasgow City Council’s head of 2014, added:
“Glasgow City Council, the Scottish Government and Commonwealth Games Scotland have a strong partnership and this does not affect that.”
Accepting gifts and gratuities should be banned in public life; some see it as token bribery to curry favour.
Although Glasgow is the home of the Labour trough, people should look at the amount of gifts and gratuities that council officers, councillors and senior employees receive on a regular basis, that should be stopped.
A new policy is need.
Quite simply, ‘you’re getting f*ck all’.
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University