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Security asks woman to leave meeting after confrontation with Greenwich Council leader
"VOTE against us in the next election" was Chris Roberts' response when a woman confronted him about the cabinet's decision to transfer the management of library services.
At a cabinet meeting last night Greenwich Council agreed to transfer the management of the borough’s library services to Greenwich Leisure Limited.
The unanimous decision was met with shouts of "rubbish" and "shame on you" from members of the public.
One woman who had earlier addressed the cabinet, approached the speaker’s table after the vote and asked council leader Chris Roberts why he had made a decision that so many people were against.
Following a series of exchanges Michelle Du’bignon said, "we didn’t want that to happen sir" - referring to the cabinet’s decision.
Councillor Roberts replied: "Then vote against us in the next election."
The heated exchange led to Cllr Roberts asking security to "remove this woman", at which point she asked why he was being so childish.
Speaking to News Shopper outside the Town Hall, Ms Du’bignon said: "I am just a member of the public and feel our libraries should be left alone.
"They are an institution of heritage, just like our Queen. We don’t want to get rid of our queen, so why do we want to get of our libraries, which is what will eventually happen.
"Why did he have to be so childish and ask for me to be removed?"
Speaking at the meeting, Unite branch secretary Onay Kasab told the cabinet that if they agreed the transfer, union members would strike, making sure they caused "maximum disruption".
He added: "This won’t be some token protest, one day letting off steam, we intend to take action we think will be necessary to get you to change your minds."
The transfer was initially agreed on February 14, but had to be reconsidered after it emerged that cabinet member Councillor John Fahy had failed to declare a personal interest when the matter was voted on last November.
There was no danger of that happening again as Cllr Fahy was notably absent from the meeting following his failed attempt to overthrow the leader the night before.