Great Britain

Maldives trip council leader is back - but refuses to answer her critics amid mounting criticism

THERE have been renewed calls for a council leader who called on people to stay local while on holiday in the Maldives to apologise and consider resigning.

Councillor Angie Dale, leader of Richmondshire District Council, came under fire after she was quoted in a press release sent out on Friday, January 8 urging people to 'heed the stay local message' amid surging Covid cases in the area.

At the time Mrs Dale and her family were 5,000 miles away on the island of Kudahuvadhoo in the Maldives.

Councillor Dale, who is leader of the independent group on the council has returned from holiday but has not responded to requests to comment. Cllr Leslie Rowe, of the green party, who has called on her to resign says she has brought the council into disrepute.

He added: "I am surprised that she has not commented. I am concerned that she is not showing any contrition. I think it would be appropriate for the issue to be looked at by a scrutiny committee and we should have a discussion about it as a council but I am not getting the impression that is the view across the authority. The willingness to be so irresponsible from a council leader is something that needs to be called out.

"I continue with my view that she should consider her position and resign, she should at least apologise for her selfishness in this action. It wasn’t just that she acted irresponsibly having been in an area with a high degree of infection, in Richmondshire, and going to another country. But to issue that statement at that time and that was to stay local and that is exactly the opposite of what she did. We don’t only have to talk the right talk, we have to walk the right walk, we have to do the right thing."

In the press release issued along with North Yorkshire Police, Cllr Dale is quoted: "The number of Covid cases is rising dramatically every day and we are told we haven't reached the peak yet, so it is vitally important that people heed the stay local message."

Richmondshire District Council said neither Cllr Dale or the authority will be making any comment.

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