That annoyance was a good example of how seriously all four parties around the Assembly chamber take public scrutiny and transparency, especially when it comes to the issue of policing.
Stephen Greenhalgh was entitled to “advise” Hogan-Howe not to attend but the Commissioner was wrong to accept that advice.
His decision to do so has dented his stock with a number of AMs, some of whom still harbour ill feelings over his careless suggestion that, unlike him, politicians don’t give straight answers.
While it was Greenhalgh who got the public dressing down, Hogan-Howe deserves his fair share of criticism for avoiding public scrutiny at a time when the Met’s reputation is badly damaged by the hacking inquiry failures and its minority of racist officers.
At the start of his tenure the Commissioner was keen to stress that he’d be his own man and that it was he, and he alone, who had responsibility for operational policing matters.
The second of these points is why he should have been in the Chamber to face questions, the first can be demonstrated by eschewing Greenhalgh’s advice and ensuring his presence next month.