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Right to draw attention to V&A costs ‘issue’

Right to draw attention to V&A costs ‘issue’

Sir, In his article, Keen to get the boot in, has Kieran Andrews, for once, strayed from that steep and narrow path of political neutrality that he normally treads with such skill and assurance?

It does not matter which parties are under discussion, call them Party A and Party B if you like, Kevin Keenan was doing what he, and many of your readers, consider to be right in drawing to the attention of the public the possibility that Dundee City Council has deliberately kept quiet about the escalating cost of the V & A, and kept the highly questionable closure of Menzieshill High School from public debate to a politically convenient time.

It is the duty of all councillors to represent the tax payers by contesting policies with which they do not agree. Nor should Mr Keenan wait for the McClelland report. These matters are in the public eye right now and are being discussed right now.

This public interest will not wait for a report nor be stifled by any newspaper article. Indeed the timing of such reports and their content has been a matter for debate these last few weeks. Mr Keenan is doing what he was elected to do and it ill behoves your distinguished correspondent to chastise him for it.

We have a problem in Scotland. If any party commands a big majority, be it in council or parliament, and chooses to pack the “cross-party” committees with its supporters, we, the electors, have no way of stopping them when they produce policies that might be ill- conceived. There is no upper house nor, as far as I can see, any judicial procedure which can act as a buffer.

This puts such a party into a position of dictatorship which might well be envied by some of the less desirable rulers of parts of Africa.

Robert Lightband. Clepington Court, Dundee.

Vote them out of office

Sir, I refer to the reported comments of Kevin Keenan (Courier, January 28) concerning an alleged “bad news cover-up” by the SNP over the closure of Menzieshill School and the huge budget overspend on the V&A building.

It is inconceivable that the governing body only became aware of these issues shortly after September 18.

If this was the case, then it simply proves huge management incompetence.

If, on the other hand, it was a deliberate decision to delay bad news until after the referendum vote, then it displays a combination of cynicism and opportunism on the part of the SNP that is just as bad, and in this case somewhat worse, than the machinations of the Westminster Government about which the SNP complains so much.

It seems councillors and politicians of all shades of persuasion are tarred by the same brush of dishonesty and contempt for those who elect them to office.

In either case, it would seem expedient to vote these councillors out of office.

Derek Farmer. Knightsward Farm, Anstruther.

Council should think again

Sir, With regard to Perth & Kinross Council’s proposal to cull deer at Kinnoull, I was in conversation some weeks ago with a lady from the monastery area of Kinnoull, and we both expressed our concern that the deer seem to be absent from our abode.

Is nothing sacred anymore? Kinnoull is a beauty spot and if walking there and sighting one of those beautiful creatures, one ought to feel a little humility and realise that it is a privilege to catch a glimpse of such beauty.

The council should think long and hard about their proposal. I cannot fathom the statistics, I never catch a glimpse of deer now and I am an avid walker.

Irene Gunnion. 15 Bowerswell Cottages, Perth.

The tune’sthe thing

Sir, In my letter advocating Scots Wha Hae (January 28), the word “and” crept into the sentence “magnificent and with a jauntier tempo”. I do recognise that, in most renditions, the tempo is painfully slow, rendering it as a dirge (even the SNP murder it in this way at their conference).

What I propose is that with a jauntier tempo it is transformed. Imagine a roll of drums, crash of cymbals then a stirring upbeat delivery. If the words are too anti-English for some though lots of national anthems hark back to ancient battles then (heresy?) write new ones. The tune’s the thing.

David Roche. Hill House, Coupar Angus.

V&A now looks like a ‘bargain’

Sir, Recently, I was glancing through a magazine in an accountant’s office. There was a very interesting article on government projects over the years. Here are some details. In the interests of fair play, I have stated respective party involvement.

Blue streak and Concorde projects: Expenditure £1.3 billion. Conservative. Written off.

Millennium Dome: Expenditure £828m. Labour. Sold for a £1.

ID Cards: Expenditure £300m. Labour. Abandoned.

NHS IT upgrade: Expenditure £2.7billion. Labour. Scrapped.

The V&A could almost be described as a bargain!

Gill Wilson. Hilton of Fern, Brechin.

Crackpot thinking

Sir, By introducing slavery into an argument about global CO2 emissions, Mary Henderson (Letters, January 26) aptly illustrates the brainwashed and crackpot thinking of those who inflict needless economic distress on the UK, with demands for needless CO2 reductions. Malcolm Parkin.

15 Gamekeepers Road, Kinnesswood, Kinross.