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Former Met Detective to stand as Independent Local Candidate

David Michael

Former Scotland Yard Detective David Michael is to stand as a prospective Independent council candidate for Catford South in Lewisham.

David, 56 (pictured), retired from the Metropolitan Police in 2002, began his 30 year policing career in Lewisham and served at Catford, Brockley, Deptford, Ladywell, Lee Green and Sydenham Police Stations. He has served both as a Police Constable and Detective Sergeant in the borough and had a distinguished career investigating murders, serious sexual offences, international and organised crime, and child protection.

He told OBV that his decision to stand was prompted by calls from local people.
“I’ve been strongly encouraged in the borough,” he said.
“I intend to transfer the passion and resourcefulness that I use on behalf of the community regularly, to the town hall.”

David joined the Labour party in 2004 and even campaigned under a Labour banner, but now believes that he can better serve the community as an independent.
He explained: “What Labour say they stand for, the reality of it didn’t materialise for me. My main thrust is to show what an independent candidate can do.

Since retiring from the Met, David has been Chairman of Lewisham Community Police Consultative Group working closely with Lewisham borough Police, Lewisham Council Crime Reduction Service, community groups and organisations on Policing and Community Safety. He was one of the original members of the Catford South Safer Neighbourhood Panel and the Daneby Road Neighbourhood Watch scheme.
He also served as the Special Adviser to the Mayor of Lewisham and Lewisham Council on Community Cohesion and Community Relations.
David explained that his work with the local community has exposed him to the realities of local political life.

He said: “I’ve been involved in local politics for a while. I’ve been regularly attending council meetings for the past five years, in the role that I had as the mayor’s special advisor. Many of the local councillors aren’t able to do what the people who sent them there want them to do. Instead they have to do what the party whip wants them to do. As an independent spirit, I can do that head on. I’ve got the confidence, ability and know how. Other people will be wary about treading on their leader’s toes.”

He continued: “Many councillors have full time jobs. I will be contactable, available, and accessible in a way that many sitting councillors are not. Many of these people have full time jobs and other commitments.”

David also called on more people to stand as independent candidates in the coming election.
He said: “I want to encourage more people to stand. Because of the structures, systems and procedures of the main political parties, there are many people who don’t get a look in. Those are the kind of people the community needs to challenge mediocrity and challenge average services. I would strongly encourage more people to stand as independents for Parliament and their local council.”

David Michael was just one of a handful of Black people who joined the Metropolitan Police Service in the early 1970s. He became one of the founding members of the Black Police Association at a time when workplace racial discrimination was at its peak.

By Dominic Bascombe

2 Responses

  1. I have had the honour of knowing David Michael for some considerable time as both a past General Secretary to the National Black Police Association and as a friend, and I believe that he will make an outstanding constituency member of parliament.

    David has great integrity and the highest ethics and is totally committed and inclusive in his desire to eradicate injustice wherever it is found. He has the human touch and brings out the best in others. Although I am a Liberal Democrat by persuasion, if I were living in Catford South, Lewisham, I would have no hesitation in voting for David.

  2. I’m so glad to see this, I’ve banged on for a while about standing as independent candidates instead of rely on party machines.

    I strongly wish David all the best, although in some ways I believe he is reinforcing the status quo he claims to deride.

    He is quoted as saying that “…there are many people who don’t get a look in. Those are the kind of people the community needs to challenge mediocrity and challenge average services”.

    He then list several positions and portfolios he holds “on behalf of the community”. David isn’t the first or last hold several portfolios but this hardly bodes well for other people getting “a look in”.

    That isn’t say David isn’t deserving, authentic, nor top-notch in all cases, it is more to encourage him to pass the baton so others can get the positions, involvement and experience needed too.

    All the very best David, unfortunately I too am not a constituent in the area.

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