By Dylan Pemberton
Like many people in Liverpool, we currently find ourselves asking why on earth has Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) refused to strip the completely dishonourable black propaganda chief Norman Bettison of his LJMU Honorary Fellowship (if you’ve been living in a cave since 15th April 1989 then you can find out more about Norman Bettison here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
Although they should have stripped this last year (and as truly an incredible decision as it was for a Liverpool institution to award him an honorary fellowship in the first place), LJMU last year insisted on waiting to hear what the IPCC said about Norman Bettison in their report despite him and his South Yorkshire Police Force cohorts being exposed for what they were even then.
Well, the IPCC have spoken – over a week ago – and yet LJMU remains utterly silent on this issue. Worse – they’re proactively trying to ignore the issue and kill the story.
For an organisation full of academics and one with its own highly paid spin doctors like Janet Martin, Director of Communications then surely it should have only taken a nanosecond for them to make this absolute no brainer of a decision because every day he remains an honorary fellow of Liverpool is an insult to the 96 and to the people of Liverpool. It is to their great and unforgivable chagrin that they have allowed this to fester further and that as we speak, Norman Bettison (persona non grata in Liverpool and held in the same low regard as Kelvin Mackenzie) is happily walking around with a formal commendation from a major Liverpool organisation that is still publically endorsing him as an honourable fellow. The rest of Liverpool seem to know what they don’t – that he is not honourable in any way whatsoever – and now the IPCC have confirmed this fact themselves.
The IPCC stated that Sir Norman Bettison has a case to answer for gross misconduct for trying to influence public opinion over the Hillsborough Independent Panel report. They found in a report published last Thursday that he had a case to answer for “discreditable conduct and abuse of authority“, breaches which would have justified his dismissal. They concluded that Bettison had attempted to influence his police authority when it was considering referring him to the police watchdog over his alleged part in a “black propaganda” campaign in the aftermath of Hillsborough.
The IPCC further stated “given the content of the Hillsborough Independent Panel’s report which implied that he may have been involved in manipulating the facts and supplying misinformation to the media, parliament and the public following the Hillsborough disaster, the evidence suggesting that he has attempted to manipulate public messages can only be damaging to his reputation. It is concerning that his first thoughts appear to have been to protect his own position.”
IPCC deputy chair Deborah Glass, said: “His attempts to manipulate and manage the perception of the referral of complaints about him, for his own self-interest, is particularly concerning. It is also conduct that falls far short of what should be expected of a chief constable. It was the IPCC’s view at the start of the investigation, as it was the view of his police authority, that Sir Norman’s actions, if proven, fell so far short of what is expected of a chief constable that dismissal would be justified. The evidence uncovered during the investigation supports that view. While we cannot bring this case to misconduct proceedings, we can publish the evidence so that the public can judge for themselves. This case should also serve as a salutary reminder to chief officers everywhere of how much public confidence is damaged when the conduct of leaders is called into question.”
Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson has put pressure on LJMU. The HJC and Hillsborough Family Support Group have put pressure on them. People all over Liverpool are putting pressure on them as we speak. Even Unison have urged them to act quickly on this matter. Maybe their own conscience will eventually put pressure on them and they’ll finally leap into action and do more than tweet a week ago that “We are aware of the IPCC report made public today & will carefully consider the findings. A statement will be issued in due course.” Due course clearly means in their own good time and they are grubbily doing what they can to stall the issue and keep Bettison’s academic-backhander in situ.
So where is this statement? What are their Communications Team doing all day? Is this not their job? Is Janet Martin Jen Chang in disguise? How many academic fatcats does it take to change a lightbulb?
Shame on LJMU, they’re a disgrace to Merseyside. And Director of Communications? Janet Martin is either completely inept in her role if she can’t release a statement on this after a week – especially as we approach the anniversary – or she’s being prevented from doing anything by the university apparatchiks. If the latter is the case then if she had any decency she’d resign in protest and speak out.
What can you do?
You can email Janet Martin on [email protected]
You can call her and her team on 0151 231 3583
You can tweet @LJMU on Twitter
You can use the hashtags #janetmartinjudas and #LJMUscabs
You can share this article wherever you can
You can certainly think twice about having anything to do with Liverpool John Moores University
JUSTICE FOR THE 96