Mayor of Tower Hamlets defends use of chauffeur driven Mercedes
PUBLISHED: 11:38 16 May 2013 | UPDATED: 11:38 16 May 2013
Mayor of Tower Hamlets Lutfur Rahman has defended his use of a taxpayer-funded chauffeur driven Mercedes - insisting it is the most cost effective way of coping with his busy schedule.
Mr Rahman said that using taxis to get to engagements was proving too expensive, and his schedule was too busy to allow him to use public transport.
The car – which costs the taxpayer £70 per day – enables him to “work efficiently and make sure every penny is value for money”, he told the Guardian newspaper.
“I don’t do this job for the allowance”, said Mr Rahman. “When I was leader of this council I took a 25 per cent cut in my allowance and after I became elected mayor the allowance was reduced by £10,000 and I accepted that.
“I have back-to-back meetings and using my own transport or public transport doesn’t work.”
He also denied that an exodus of senior staff at the town hall showed “disarray”, insisting it is a “strong performing council”.