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Boris accused of leaving London 'mayorless'

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has been accused of ‘clearing his desk a year early’ after stepping down as chair on two major regeneration projects in the capital

Johnson wrote to the London Assembly in the week of the General Election, informing them that he would be standing down from his positions at the London Legacy Development Corporation and the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation.

But the move has been slammed by the London Assembly with Labour member Onkar Sahota saying Johnson was ‘focusing his energies elsewhere’ since becoming an MP and was leaving the capital ‘mayorless’.

A spokesman for the mayor said Johnson remained ‘very much in charge’.

He said: ‘The mayor remains very much in charge and will continue to oversee the delivery of regeneration projects across London, including the work of the London Legacy Development Corporation and the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation.

‘This is about streamlining of portfolios and, with their vast experience, Neale Coleman and Edward Lister are perfectly placed to take on the chairmanship of the two MDCs and deliver the mayor’s vision for these two important areas of the capital.’

But Sahota, the assembly member for Ealing and Hillingdon where the Old Oak Common regeneration project is based, said it was ‘the latest chapter of Boris Johnson’s long goodbye from City Hall’.

He added: ‘The mayor seems intent on clearing his desk a year early and focusing his energies elsewhere since his election to parliament, leaving Londoners increasingly mayorless.

‘These two regeneration projects are massively important and make many controversial decisions.

‘Handing over the reins to civil servants like this will remove an important layer of democratic accountability.’

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