IT is ironic that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn accuses the Prime Minister of "running down the clock" over Brexit given the shameful filibustering of the Labour Party in Bolton Council Chamber on March 20.

Many people felt that things were getting better under Labour with more openness, transparency and fairer, more equitable distribution of the borough’s resources which appeared to demonstrate that they were perhaps changing.

Wednesday’s performance reinforced the belief that Labour is not to be trusted and will do absolutely anything to cling on to power.

Farnworth and Kearsley First made commitments to residents that we would challenge such issues as fly-tipping and problems with the slim bin, and hoped that we would at least get the opportunity to debate these issues.

Labour’s abuse of its role as the ruling party completely undermines what the public expects of its local council ­— namely decisions to be decided locally in a democratic manner. Farnworth and Kearsley First’s motion about the merits of the slim-bin and consultation with the people of this borough about possible changes was not heard despite being presented for four successive council meetings.

The motion for a reduction in the minimum charged for bulky-item uplift was also not heard because of Labour’s antics.

Opposition parties purposefully kept written questions down to a minimum in order to free up time to clear the backlog of motions, despite this quote from a leading Labour group, "The Tories say it's about them holding us to account, but if that's the case why did they only put in two questions?"

The Labour group deliberately contrived the procedure in the council chamber to deprive other parties of a meaningful debate and the opportunity to vote on very important issues pertaining to this borough.

A leading Labour councillor commented: “We're not just in the chamber to speak to each other, we're there to speak to the public.”

The Labour group used public resources for over one hour for what amounted to a party election broadcast on behalf of the Labour Party in which no opposition councillors could challenge any of the questions.

Is it any surprise that of the 18 questions asked by Labour councillors, seventeen were posed by people who are Labour candidates hoping for re-election on May 2?

Farnworth & Kearsley First has long believed that interest in, and understanding of, local politics would empower people and allow them to make informed decisions.

The only thing that came from the broadcast of the full council meeting was that the public could see the desperate manipulation used by the ruling Labour group in order to stifle democratic debate about issues that many in this borough believe are having a serious detrimental effect on their lives and the environment.

Paul Heslop

Farnworth and Kearsley First