TravelWatch chairman sacked over Boris gaff

The chairman of TravelWatch, the London transport watchdog, has been sacked from his post following comments he made in the London mayoral election supporting Boris Johnson’s candidacy.

Brian Cooke was grilled today by London Assembly’s transport committee before a majority of the panel voted to terminate his contract.

Just before the elections, Mr Cooke said: “Sometimes one wonders whether the truth and Mr Livingstone sit together at all.

“When it comes to realistic delivery I believe that a Boris Johnson administration would serve Londoners better.”

The vote is somewhat symbolic, seeing as Mr Cooke’s four-year term of office terminates on September 30th. A recruitment process is already underway for his replacement.

Labour’s transport spokesperson Val Shawcross said: “The committee took the view that Brian Cooke’s reputation as an impartial representative of London’s travelling public had been irreversibly damaged.

“It is sad for Brian that he had to leave in these circumstances but by making his political views public he compromised Travelwatch and seriously breached the conditions of his appointment.

“The committee really had no other choice.”