Leader speaks out over Milton Keynes Council’s sexual offences scandal: ‘I am sickened and disgusted’

Leader of the Council, Councillor Pete Marland
Leader of the Council, Councillor Pete Marland

A convicted rapist who has been working as a taxi driver in the city for seven months has “sickened and disgusted” the leader of the council.

Pete Marland, who took over as leader in May, said: “The council is there to keep people safe and it appears we have made really bad errors.

“It is our job going forward that it does not happen again.

“We need to make sure the people of Milton Keynes feel safe and confident when getting into taxis.

“I am sickened and disgusted by what has happened.”

Commenting on the resignation of Mayor of Milton Keynes Subhan Shafiq after it emerged that he had personally vouched for a convicted rapist to become a taxi driver, Mr Marland said: “Subhan needs to really reflect carefully on the nature of what he has done and his position as a councillor.”

Two other councillors - Stuart Burke and Gladstone McKenzie - have left their roles on the licensing committee over the issue - but all three remain councillors.

Mr Marland added: “Gladstone McKenzie has got many years of community service behind him. He has owned up that he made a mistake and taken the right decision to step down so at the moment I think he should remain in his role as councillor.

“Stuart has been chair for many years and made a lot of decisions. He has done the right thing in standing down as chair and from the panel.”