Leach on Honours List 
Saturday, December 31, 2016 at 10:38AM
Bill Barclay

Congratulations are in order for Glenn Leach on havng attained the rank of 'Officer' on the New Year's Honours List, but as far as I am concerned, it simply adds to the discrediting of the honours system as a whole.

That a man of his limited achievement can attain such an honour speaks to the incredible influence that is brought to bear to ensure that certain favoured supporters of the Government in particular, but always balanced with Maori, educators, sports people and a large number of local government appointees are recognised in this manner.

The secretive manner in which nominations are made, and appointments approved speaks of patronage, largesse and in some cases what amounts to a 'pay-off' for services performed. There are some who spend their entire life aspiring to attain recognition in this manner, and who 'toe the line' appropriately.

Those who think 'outside the square,' or who 'rock the boat' seldom get a nod, and are well and truely weeded out by the consummate bureaucrats who are tasked with the role of sifting the nominations. Don't hold your breath awaiting John Minto's elevation!

I recognise that Leach made some outstanding moves while he was in the Mayoral role here, but he was elected on a lie reminiscent of the 'post-truth' era now well established by Donald Trump, and he spent his entire six years in office behaving in a bullish and bullying manner that would be little recognised outside of the four walls of 'Castle.'

His achievements in the tourism sphere were mainly to bring about the fall of the old Tourism Coromandel structure, and replace with one that is dictatorial and no less opaque. His 'Grand Projects,' and 'Coromandel Heritage Region' have been nothing more than extravagant failures when seen through the lens of 'progress to date,' and his outrageous 'Economic Development Committee' was nothing more than a means to give voice to his unelected supporters and mates at the Council table.

In short, his passing has been a blessing, given emphasis by the inclusiveness and aptitude already displayed by his successor.

There will no doubt be copious back-slapping and expressions of goodwill towards the man, but count me out - I was in a position to observe his behaviour 'behind the scenes,' and it was not pretty.

Go well into retirement Glenn with your medal, but please stay out of local government here at least in the future. One Donald Trump at a time is quite enough. God help us if he ever similarly discovers 'social media.'



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