Party-free choice in police poll

THE race to become political boss of Suffolk Police has become a three-hander.

David Cocks, chairman of the mental health charity Suffolk Mind, has put himself up as an independent candidate in the election for a police commissioner. He faces Conservative Tim Passmore and Labour‘s Jane Basham.

Mr Cocks is a former chief executive of Orwell Radio and a founder of Saxon Radio in Bury St Edmunds. He feels there is no place for politics in what is the only county-wide post for which there is an election.

“I think there is a real danger that you are handcuffing the police to a political party for a four year period,” he said today.

“This election is very different from a local government election where you are electing people into a council where there’s a debate between parties.

“There needs to be an independent candidate to give voters the choice of someone not allied to a political party. “

The difficulty for independents is that candidates must put up a £5,000 deposit and find 100 supporters. They then face running a county-wide campaign without a party organisation to help them.

The election is on Thursday November 15.