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Ealing and Northfield

Mahfouz is taking residents for fools

Two weeks ago in the Gazette and this week on ActonW3.com and ealingtoday.co.uk the council has been criticised by me for the poor state of street cleaning over the last year.

Labour’s Cllr Bassam Mahfouz is the person in charge of transport and environment, as such he is responsible for the cleaning contract currently being undertaken rather badly by Enterprise. He has spent the last year trying to convince people that it is all OK.

Asked to comment on a full year’s worth of figures rather than saying sorry he is resorting to talking nonsense. When ealingtoday.co.uk printed figures given to me by council officers he responded saying:

The figures for the past 3 months show that streets are the cleanest they’ve been in recent years with an average of just under 99% of streets meeting our tough grade A standard for cleanliness.

Although we recognise that there have been problems in the past there is now steady improvement which we’re monitoring very closely. Keeping our streets clean is one of our top priorities and we have rightly set high standards which we expect our contractor, Enterprise to meet.

This is just a lie.

What these figures mean is this: In March the council managed to inspect 19% of its streets and found that 77% were clean enough (the contractual standard required is 95%). The contractor then went back and recleaned most of the failed streets out of the 19% inspected streets. Of the ones re-inspected the council found 99% of them were up to standard, and so on each month.

The 81% not inspected in March are statistically certain to be only 77% clean too. So the inspected 19% got clean in the end. But 23% of the remaining 81% were never inspected and stayed dirty – that is 19%. That is why the Borough looks visibly dirtier.

Our streets are not clean enough. We had 12% dirty streets straight after cleaning two years ago and 30% last year. If you think that the streets are dirtier than they were then you are right – and Mahfouz keeps spewing out his statistics like a Soviet tractor factory manager.