In the face of mounting public pressure, Bob is getting desperate...

He's claimed that Christchurch City Council merely has 'communications problems'. He's raised the spectre of government-appointed commissioners taking over at the city council. He's even tried to be humble and admitted that 'mistakes' have been made.

But nothing a desperate Bob has said or done has been able to stem the rising tide of public opposition to his autocratic rule.

So now Bob has had a quiet word with his faithful right hand man and - surprise - Tony Marryatt now says that he has not ruled out turning down his $68,000 salary rise! It's amazing what a little bit of public pressure will do to halt stubborn and arrogant politicians right in their tracks.

This, of course, is a far cry from what Marryatt said just a month ago. He declared "I am not refusing the pay offer and I am not giving it to charity.''

But you have to read the fine print when it comes to despots like Marryatt. He also says that he will be interested in the 'outcome' of the meeting between city councillors and Local Government Minister Nick Smith tomorrow afternoon.

But if Marryatt thinks $68,000 will buy 'The Bob and Tony Show' the freedom to carry on with their secretive and autocratic ways , he'd better think again. And what's more it's completely unacceptable for Sideshow Bob and Marryatt to attempt to hold the good people of Christchurch to ransom - and try to predetermine the outcome of the meeting tomorrow.

Nor will $68,000 'buy off' the protest on February 1.

As organiser Peter Lynch has said : "We have much bigger issues to address, such as the dysfunctionality of the council, and the poor decisions it has been making,"

Something is rotten at the heart of the Christchurch City Council and cosmetic surgery won't solve the problem.


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