The London Assembly’s Police and Crime Committee says senior Metropolitan Police officers and the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) have failed to make the case for the force to be equipped with water cannon.
Earlier this week it emerged that Mayor Boris Johnson has lobbied Government ministers for their in-principle permission to purchase water cannon following requests by Scotland Yard.
MOPAC, which is headed by Deputy Mayor Stephen Greenhalgh, says it will consult with Londoners ahead of any final decision to purchase the water cannon.
The commitment to consult Londoners was given in a letter from Mr Greenhalgh to Joanne McCartney AM, Chair of the Police and Crime Committee
However Assembly Member McCartney says the time available for the consultation is insufficient given the Met’s desire to have the cannon operational by this summer.
Responding to the Deputy Mayor, Ms McCartney said she’s “concerned that the timetable proposed in your letter, with a final decision to be made by mid-February, will not provide sufficient time for an open, transparent debate to take place in such a short period.”
The committee will question Mr Greenhalgh and senior officers from the Metropolitan Police about their plans for the water cannon at a meeting on January 30th.