North Lanarkshire has new provost as fallout from leadership change continues at Motherwell Civic Centre

A groundbreaking new civic head has now been selected at North Lanarkshire Council in what is further proof of a changing of the guard at Motherwell Civic Centre since Labour unexpectedly regained control of the council earlier this month.

By Clare Grant
By Clare Grant

In the latest twist in a saga which saw former leader Jordan Linden stand down earlier in the month after allegations of sexual impropriety, the highest civic role is also now in the hands of the Labour Party as a consequence.

Following an election at a special meeting of the council, it has now been confirmed that Labour man Councillor Kenny Duffy (Motherwell South East and Ravenscraig) was elected as Provost. Councillor Bob Burgess (Wishaw) was elected as Depute Provost.

The council has pointed out that the new Provost is its youngest and first openly LGBT+ civic leader.

The Provost himself said, “It is a true privilege to represent the people of North Lanarkshire as the civic head.

"It is a wonderful opportunity to see the community spirit that runs through the towns and villages of North Lanarkshire as well as the astonishing and diverse range of work that people do for their own communities.

"As the youngest and first LGBT+ person to hold the office, I look forward to working with people, groups, businesses and charities across North Lanarkshire. As elected members, we all have a responsibility to represent our communities and it’s a great honour to do so.

" It’s important to me in my role that I champion every member’s right to speak fairly in the council chamber and I am looking forward to achieving that.”

Last week, we reported that the former Provost Agnes Magowan who represents the Scottish National Party was standing down for family reasons after just several months in office.

However only a member of the ruling Labour party could take up the role after the SNP lost control of the administration.

The new set-up is continuing to be a bone of contention between both sides amidst SNP claims that the electorate has been failed by the changes. For more coverage on the fallout see Page 3.