Khan splashes £250k on statue toppling commission
New figures have revealed that Sadiq Khan will spend nearly £250,000 next year on his statue-toppling commission despite City Hall facing cuts.
The Mayor is forking out the substantial sum to fund his new Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm. It will review and remove statues, plaques and street names in London which commemorate individuals with legacies that don’t meet today’s standards. London Assembly Member and Member of Parliament Gareth Bacon branded the Mayor’s commission a “divisive, virtue signalling PR stunt”. He told Sadiq Khan to stop wasting taxpayers’ money and “focus on Londoners’ priorities”.
Sadiq Khan set up the controversial Commission earlier this year after protesters targeted and vandalised monuments in London, including the Cenotaph, Winston Churchill, and Abraham Lincoln.
The spending announcement comes despite the Mayor planning to cut London’s policing budget by £110 million to plug the £483 million hole in City Hall’s finances.
Gareth Bacon AM MP commented: “This is a disgraceful waste of taxpayers’ cash. The Mayor should not be spending a quarter of a million pounds on a divisive, virtual signalling PR stunt which threatens to erase large swathes of London’s history.
“It’s staggering that the Mayor has found a spare £250,000 to wage war on London’s statues while he pleads poverty at City Hall. Sadiq Khan repeatedly claims to have no money when it comes to policing, housing or transport, but constantly finds cash to jump on passing bandwagons. “Sadiq Khan’s expensive review of the capital’s statues, plaques and street names should make us all deeply uncomfortable. No politician should be allowed to rewrite our nation’s history. Toppling statues does nothing to resolve today’s problems and only hides yesterday’s mistakes.
“Instead of pandering to statue vandals and protesters who want to smear British heroes, the Mayor should focus on Londoners’ priorities. Londoners won’t forgive Khan for cutting the capital’s police by £110 million while he hoards a war chest to topple towering British figures.”