Opposition fear debate ‘stifled’

OPPOSITION councillors in Sheffield have accused the ruling Labour administration of attempting to ‘stifle’ debate by making changes to the monthly full council meeting.

Sheffield Council debates had a 40-minute time limit, allowing several items to be discussed during meetings, but the cap has been lifted to ‘allow more councillors to speak in important debates’. Also, apart from at four meetings where opposition parties can propose the first motion, Labour will propose most topics.

Coun Shaffaq Mohammed, opposition Liberal Democrat group leader, claimed the plans would see ‘all opposition to Labour shut off’.

Coun Jillian Creasy, Green Party group leader, accused Labour of ‘overriding opposition parties’ views’.

Coun Julie Dore, Labour’s council leader, said: “More councillors will have the chance to engage in debates.”