Former Stoke-on-Trent City Councillors Mark Davis and Hazel Lyth today welcomed the publication of the findings of a Stoke-on-Trent City Council investigation into their conduct which categorically cleared them of any wrong doing.
The allegations, which were made public by former Councillor Mike Barnes, centred on the relationship between Mr Davis and Ms Hazel Lyth and a company called PREM Management. It was alleged that both Mr Davis and Ms Lyth used their positions as city councillors to gain advantage for the company, and that they failed to publically declare interests in the firm.
After an investigation lasting over seven months, a committee of councillors and independent members has decided that neither Mr Davis nor Ms Lyth committed any breach of the council’s strict code of conduct. The investigation into the allegations involved extensive interviews, and research into the affairs of the company and was carried out by an independent legal officer of the City Council.
Mr Davis said
My honesty and integrity are massively important to me and I am very pleased that the Standards Committee have found me completely innocent of the allegations against me. Having this shadow hanging over me and my family for the last seven months has been very difficult and I am glad that the process has come to an end. Sadly, the whole thing was made a lot worse by the decision of a now former councillor to publish details of the confidential complaint on the internet.
Ms Lyth said
I am glad that the committee have finally cleared me and that I can move on with no stain on my character. The allegations against Mark and I were without foundation and I have maintained my innocence throughout the investigation. The damage inflicted by the unfounded accusations has taken a heavy toll on all innocent parties included in the complaint and lives, businesses and careers have been deeply affected. Whilst I appreciate that due diligence must take its’ course; it is sad that it has taken so many months to reach this conclusion and that Mark and I have had to suffer in silence, long after leaving the council.
It is understood that a separate investigation is being undertaken into former councillor Mike Barnes and his conduct in publicising the initial complaint.
This is a reposting of an article from 13 October that got lost in the server update