The Mayor’s press office tell us that Boris has offered his condolences to the people of China following the earthquake in the Sichuan province but why on earth did he resort to sending an appointee to the Chinese Embassy to sign the book of condolences?
Instead of attending himself or sending the legally recognised Deputy Mayor Richard Barnes or even asking the London Assembly Chair to attend on behalf of the entire Authority, the Mayor instead sent Ian Clement, the so-called Deputy Mayor for Government Relations.
But, as Mr Johnson reluctantly conceded at this morning’s Mayor’s Question Time, the deputy mayor titles handed out to Mr Clement, Kit Malthouse and Ray Lewis are simply honorific.
For an administration which came to power on a promise to end cronyism it’s pretty disappointing that the Mayor’s team are unable to answer how the titles are arrived at.
Of course it’s right to reach out to other cities and countries but why were the Chinese people palmed off with an employee instead of an elected member of the Authority?