Resignation of Sir Ian Blair

Press Release

Mayor’s statement on resignation of Sir Ian Blair
2-10-2008

“Sir Ian Blair has made a lasting and distinguished contribution to policing, in London and across the UK, for the last 34 years.

He will be especially remembered for his successful introduction in London of the Safer Neighbourhood teams and for falling crime levels virtually across the board.

In the face of a chronic and dangerous terrorist threat, he can be very proud of his record in helping to keep millions of Londoners safe from harm.

But there comes a time in any organisation when it becomes clear it would benefit from new leadership and clarity of purpose. I believe that time is now.

And following a meeting with Sir Ian yesterday, he has agreed to give someone else the chance to offer new leadership for policing in London. And I am sure he has done the right thing.

I will always be grateful to Sir Ian for the productive start he has made to our plans to tackle serious violence and to reduce disorder on public transport.

He leaves having made London safer and with our gratitude and best wishes. There is no doubt that he will continue to make a significant intellectual contribution to crime fighting in the UK and abroad.”

See GLA site

46 thoughts on “Resignation of Sir Ian Blair”

  1. Boris you have acted speedily as you always do in the best interests of Londoners. It was time for a change.

  2. Neighbourhood policing does not work Boris. It’s a sticking plaster – crime control cheap and lite.

    In Walthamstow it has not dealt with the gangs openly selling smuggled cigarettes and dvds in the High Street or the organised gangs of Romnain shell game scammers here and in Leyton. They send a message that organized criminals can operate with impunity. That is very bad for business confidence. Add to the mix the unacceptably high levels of knife crime and people do not feel that we have the police force we need for the area. The High Street police station is part-time and undermanned – the useless PCSOs do not substitute for proper policemen with powers of arrest, out on the street, and not folding leaflets in the back office.

    Well done for getting rid of Sir Ian Blair. Any chance that something can be done about the New Labour cronies packing the Audit Commission and protecting their inept friends from the consequences of allowing corruption and mismanagement in our Local Authority?

  3. Well done, I am sure that the vast majority of Londoners and the whole of the Metropolitan Police salute you, and are well pleased to be rid of of by far the worst Commissioner of the Metropolis in history.

    In fact, I would go so far as to say that you will have the support and thanks of the whole of the British police force, it’s the politically correct idiots like Blair who have brought policing to its knees in the UK. Amongst other things, Blair invested the useless PCSO, he had to go for that alone!

  4. In today’s Standard, it says that, ever helpful, Ken Livingstone got on the blower and tried to get Sir Ian to change his mind. He is such a sweetie!

  5. Boris,
    I have to respect you for doing that. You are definitely a new breed of politician and was demoralizing to se Ian Blair as chief of Police after the London tube murder.
    Iasnaia

  6. Well done, Boris, for being authoritative and sensible. You are so admirable.

    Can you believe it? Ian Blair used public money to pay his close friend of 30 years a five figure sum for a makeover ! Who does he think he is, a celebrity ?!

  7. Three quarters of the press support this move by the Mayor. the general feeling is that the Met. has lost confidence in Sir Ian. Morale has been badly damaged and this move is long overdue. He should have resigned at the time of the sad death of Mr. de Menezes. There are big question marks over Sir ian about his handling of his incident and the fact that details were kept from him. The cash for cronies inquiry has been the last nail in his coffin.

  8. Well done Boris. The objections to Sir Ian are reflected in opinion of the Police force in general all over the country. I work on a deprived council estate policed almost entirely by PCSO’s and crime/nuisance is rife. Residents genuinely struggle to get a police response. Let’s start from here and sort the Police out!

  9. So most of the press support this move. Is this supposed to make it right? Why should press influence make this a good thing to do? I don’t like Ian Blair and think he should have gone after the de Menenzes shooting. But he is not a mayoral appointee and he should not have been got rid of in this way. If legal methods don’t work it seems that Mr Johnson will do anything to get his own way. What an example to others. What a brave man too, to send his deputy to speak about this matter on television last night. Too afraid to do it yourself Mr J? If that is the kind of person you want to work with then heaven help London.

  10. At last there is a mayor that will stand up to central government and do what is required without fear or favour. Well done Boris.

  11. Thank you, thank you. We are in need of fresh blood like our government instead of the stale and stagnant situation we are getting in with our country and police service.
    I may only be 24 but I care for my country and hate the state of fear we civilised people are in. We need to shed the political need to meet employment targets and hire the right men/women for the job, regardless of age sex or race. I am glad I voted for you Boris and hope you know your opinion matters and there are a lot of people backing Boris.

    On a lighter note Iā€™m in need of a photo for my famous people photo section on my facebook, hope to see you around town so I can steal a quick snap.

    Take care šŸ™‚

  12. People buy the press, Sheila. In the absence of any true democracy the amount of copy shifted is probably the most accurate gauge of peoples’ attitudes.

    This left-wing strangle hold on our country must be broken and broken soon – and I don’t much care how it’s done.

    The little people are rejoicing, Sheila – be happy for them.

    Well done Boris.

  13. As a result of the forced resignation of the Police Commissioner, taxpayers must now pay for his replacement while also starting to pay his annual pension and damages for wrongful dismissal. Since Boris Johnston has not resigned for having committed the taxpayer to such unnecessary expense at a time of financial stress, I presume that he intends to pay the latter out of his own pocket.

  14. Getting them out by force would be really nice, William. I suppose that paying the buggers off will have to do instead – we’re not Romans after all.

    PS, do we have the Nu Lab rapid rebuttal squad visiting here ? The lack of cogency seems strangely familiar.

  15. Are you suggesting we should suffer a Chief of the Metropolitan Police in charge of our policing who has made serious errors, resulting in loss of morale in the force and do nothing about that? Boris johnson did not appoint Sir Ian. He has no confidence in Sir Ian, so very politely informed him of that. At least 80% of the press are behind this action by our Mayor.

  16. Amanda Platell in today’s Mail on Sunday.

    “”…the tory’s clown prince, Boris johnson, has shown himself to have a core of steel inside a blond blancmange. In a brilliant and brutal coup,m the London mayor has claimed the prized political scalp of Met chief Sir Ian Blair………

    It took real guts for Boris – a man more known for wise cracks than wise decisions – to outfox the commissioner who enjoyed an unprecedented level of protection from his political puppet masters.

    Ms. Smith says that when it comes to appointing a new Met Chief “What’s important is that you keep party politics out of it”.

    What rank hypocrisy! Sir Ian was the ultimate in politicial stooges!”

    She ends “Given the deficient pygmies in the Cabinet
    ……London – and Britain deserved better. Good on you Boris!”

    WELL SAID AMANDA PLATELL. I have not always agreed with your articles as you know, but this morning I salute you as the most peerless and fearless of journalists! WELL SAID AMANDA OH VERY WELL SAID!!!!!

  17. Clown Buffoon vacuos blonde bimbo. They have called Boris everything, they can now add Bare Faced Liar to the list. Boris did not consult widely before getting rid of Blair.

    Blair was an easy target no one liked him, he should have told Boris to get stuffed. Cameron is bricking it Boris or the people behind Boris willl have him to. Those Porterites from Westminster City Council vicious nasty tories all of them.

    Boris the upper class warrior chief representative of the ponce class. David Davies the self made man was dumped, by the Tory upper class twats Kit Malthouse was behind this one.

  18. Politicians of any party should not replace chiefs of police. It is essentail that the police simply ensure our safety and are not seen as an arm of the politicians. Whatever anybody thinks of the man, Boris you have made a grave mistake. It was the same one that Thatcher made in Yorkshire and it took a generation to bring back the trust that so many people lost in the police. I live in London and work daily with the Police. The Mayor must not have the ability to hire and fire the head of the Met that is a dangerous day for us all.

  19. It was definitely right to get rid of Ian Blair, especially after the murder of Jean Charles de Menezes in 2005. He should have gone then, but I guess Ken Livingstone was a friend of his, as was Tony Blair, and they wanted him to keep his job, regardless of his competency to do the job. He took away the trust people had in the Metropolitan Police. What we need now is a decent, honest and sensible new head of the Met, who will not allow his officers to murder, and who will admit to his mistakes or those of his Force and take responsibility for the actions of the Police under his command.

  20. Strong support for Boris’s action in the press. Ex policeman turned politician Ray Mallon has come out to say that Sir Ian should have been axed much sooner. Mr. Mallon accused Sir Ian of allowing himself to be used as “a political pawn” by the Labour Government.

    “He (Boris) has done what Ken Livingstone should have done a long long time ago. I believe it was a resigning offence when he secretly recorded a conversation with the Attorney General. There has been a host of other issues, both before and since.” Sunday Express. today.

  21. Boris was right to get rid of Sir Ian, when you employ academic politically correct people to high rank in the police as opposed to real coppers, Sir Ian is what you get. Being in contact with officers from various forces on a daily basis very few have confidence in their respective Chief. The politically correct emphasis on racial and domestic violence matters has meant police have taken their eye off the ball concerning burglary and robbery type offences. Contact the police to report a burglary then a racial or domestic incident and see the unbelievable difference in response times.

  22. Dear Boris
    It was nice to have met you at London Freewheel 2008, I’m glad you remembred me. But why did you not attend the rally at Hyde Park the day before, why couldn’t you make it, tell a few 1000’s concerned Londoners what you would do to cut down on violent crime and gang culture? I think many would have appreciated you coming there, instead you had a very brief speech via videolink, which was disappointing. Please try to attend rallies in the future.
    Kind regards,
    Alida

  23. Boris Johnson has just appeared on THE POLITICS SHOW and in his own inimitable way, clearly explained the situation regarding the departure of Sir Ian Blair.

    Boris said that his main concern was that, because of the various issues surrounding Sir Ian Blair, the Met. Chief was too distracted to give his full attention to the serious challenges facing the Chief of the Met.

    He and Sir Ian both agreed that no purpose would be served in isolating any specific issue and using that as the reason for Sir Ian’s departure. Sir Ian himself was only too well aware of the nature of the issues he faced. As Mayor, Boris is entitled to express his lack of confidence in the Head of the Met. without exceeding his role, and that is what he felt. Sir Ian had time to consider his position, he slept on the matter and then decided to resign.

    Although it might suit Jacqui Smith to say that she feels the Mayor has exceeded his authority, she too has been only too well aware of the difficulties and criticisms that Sir Ian Blair has been facing. That is why she accepted his resignation as soon as it was tendered to her.

    If sir Ian had been on firm ground, as Brian Paddick has previously commented on NEWSNIGHT, maybe there would have been a case for him deciding to stay and to tough things out. If that had been the case, Jacqui Smith would certainly not have immediately accepted his resignation. Sir ian knew that he was NOT on firm ground, he was totally aware of that without Boris having to go into any details, and he has therefore done the right and honourable thing by leaving.

    It is plain from what Boris said on THE POLITICS SHOW that this issue is one he has considered very deeply and his main and only concern is what is best for the safety of Londoners.

    This is the gist of the programme as far as I can deduce, and Boris ended by saying in his own unique way that any explanation that implies he has exceeded his role, is balderdash, bunkum, and piffle. (I think these were the words he used!)

  24. Forgive me if I’ve missed it but I couldn’t see a link to the Politics Show being referenced on this blog. Tis here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00dx4f0

    Boris is at the end (it’s a long show) and the last few minutes I found particularly interesting – Boz uses his media coverage to urge the government to respond to calls for a permit system for digging up the roads. Simple but sooo effective. That would mean you wouldn’t have the gas people stopping traffic one week and drainage the next then the electric board next month ad infinitum. Going through a central office makes sense. Unless it’s run by the Home Office, obviously.

  25. Thank you for providing the link Jaq, are you feeling better?

    The way I see the Sir Ian thing is this way. Boris very pleasantly and determinedly took Sir Ian for a walk along the cliff edge to consider the view. He did not push him off. Sir Ian decided to do that all by himself.

  26. I have to share this letter that appeared in today’s Standard in the Readers Views column.

    “For many months now in the wake of the inquiries into the Stockwell shooting and the race discrimination cases brought by senior Met officers, there has been widespread incredulity that Sir Ian Blair had not resigned and was cllinging to his job. But as soon as the Tory Mayor efffectively asks for Sir Ian’s resignation, it is paraded as shameful and a “political act”. Boris Johnson’s critics show themselves to be much more “political” than the Mayor.”

    Allan Palmer, Billingshurst, West Sussex.

  27. Congratulations Boris Finally the METS TYRANT has gone and not before time. As A victim of a miscarriage of justice it about time someone started to get rid off the bad apples within the police.

    Well done Boris

    Keith

  28. Angela – thank you for your enquiry, I’m on the mend šŸ™‚

    No thanks to the health professionals who are in charge of treatment. I find it amazing that even mediocre doctors can parade about the community as if God, GPs earning an astonishing amount of money for pushing drugs and offloading anything difficult or argumentative onto a consultant who’s ego is even bigger. So much money in the NHS could be saved with a sensible approach and if they came down off their high horse.

    I wonder how they feel about the qualified engineers and maintenance crew who design and maintain the cars, trains and aeroplanes they trust their lives to? Except those people earn much less than a doctor.

    I’ve realised we are still in the middle ages, only its shrink-wrapped and nicely packaged, with government targets in triplicate. So that’s ok then.

    Boris for PM.

  29. Respect to you Boris, for putting us Londoners first.

    The facts spoke for themselves. He was a useless son of a gun and Boris you were the only man with enough balls to get rid of the scum.

  30. What was remarkable about Ian Blair’s going was that he claims he was “sacked” by Mayor Boris Johnson. I thought Boris only sacked women. Perhaps he’s moving into the world of equality at last.

    Roger

  31. Jaq dearest, I am so glad you are on the mend. I was in Prague this year and a friend of mine had an operation there. In Prague they have the lowest level of MRSA in Europe and the medical care was absolutely fantastic. then she came home and had to have her stitches out here. In 4 weeks she had an infection, because they had not taken out all the stitches properly and an infection resulted. It did not reflect very well on the hospital and she was very ticked off!

  32. Roger Price, well now you know different, Boris is firm in dealing with anyone who is in the wrong job. He seems to be the soul of tact and consideration as he fires you. (which is commendable). I do like it how he considered Sir Ian’s feelings, and only said lovely things about him, that was well done. But if people are discovering that the new Mayor is absolutely no pushover, that is all to the good.

  33. I admire Boris’s barefaced cheek in the financial crisis furore of late. Even the financiers most ardent backers and apologists realised it was not prudent to defend them wholeheartedly when things were at their worst. Yet there we had Boris extolling the praises of financiers and how they should not be regualted etc. I wonder what “hat” he was wearing, Mayor of London, old fashioned Tory or shareholder. I believe it was really the latter, and his statement on that topic was that of someone with a vested interest which he’d wrapped up as a moral principle.

  34. Forget the nice words, Boris, it’s simply good riddance at long last to a morally bankrupt, self-serving, highly devious police officer. His news conferences were always to be relied up as an example of the reminder of the link between power and corruption. I am so grateful someone finally ‘took him out’.

  35. That still leaves the question I raised a while ago, as to Boris’s agenda when he unconditionally said that financiers brought a lot of benefit to London and should not be managed. Well so did slave traders who in their time also had their apologists and sycophants. Even great and forward looking US presidents such as Roosevelt advocated control over the money markets of his time, when the great depression of the 1920s was at its height. Perhaps Boris should look to the broader canvas history and not just short term gain.

  36. Boris,

    You really are a fool. This is why policing and politics should never mix, because people like you think they know best and they meddle, when in fact they don’t know best, and it is most likely the opposite, they know very little about policing and the dynamics of policing.

    Stick to something your good at, dodging questions, provide stupid answers to genuine questions and generally being the stereo typical politician.

    The proof of your question dodging is on YouTube at:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vRRYDVaXdaA&NR=1

    You should probably watch it and then realise why you are so “liked”.

  37. Sir Ian Blair has worked hard all his life for what is right and is a honourable man. A man was tragically shoot by mistake at a time when all Londoner’s and politicians expected results when a bunch of murderous terrorist needed to be stopped. These events changed things for Sir Ian Blair and people wanted a scape goat. Sir Ian Blair stands for everything that is right and he and all his Police Officers protect us Twenty Four hours a day Seven days a week no matter who we are. Who else do we have to protect us??????? These officers put their lives on the line for us day in and day out. They do it because they are good honourable people that care for all of us. A mistake has happened and you want to Destroy a good man. What sort of message is that giving to the general Public. Our protectors are being treated like common criminals and their jobs should go when Politicians and the Public expected results, this is worse than : bite the hand that feeds you, it is just unfair. I feel sad for Sir Ian Blair because I can see that he has done good things for London and he is truely a worthy and honourable man that cares. We must stop treating good men like this because they are Heroes that deserve more respect than what they are given. Remember that the Police protect us, dont destroy a good man.

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