MARCH Mayor Bernard Keane has spoken out in the wake of national publicity highlighting councillors who had to make an impromptu toilet stop while on official duties.
Mr Keane (pictured), who was the only Conservative councillor named in the stories, believes it’s an attempt to “embarrass and ridicule” him.
He admits needing to stop for a toilet break while on a Fenland Council planning committee site visit, along with three other councillors, but said he went out of sight behind a barn.
Mr Keane explained: “We can be out for four hours or more at a time on a site visit and you can be right out in the sticks. Sometimes you just need to go.”
He has had to defend his actions to national newspapers and radio stations after it was reported the councillors were reprimanded in a private meeting.
But Mr Keane told the Citizen there has been no disciplinary action.
He added: “This has been blown out of proportion. It’s hardly national news, is it?”
He was backed up by Fenland Council leader Alan Melton, who said he had no comment then added the councillors had not been disciplined and would not be.
“It’s all done and dusted,” he said. “It’s a storm in a teacup.”
Furthermore a spokesperson for Fenland Council repeated that there was no comment to make.
The reports have caused mixed reactions from people, with some saying the councillors should have been fined for urinating in a public place. Others have sided with Mr Keane.
The Citizen has researched the law with regards to urinating in public and while there is no hard-and-fast rule on this matter, the consensus appears to be that if the offender is not causing distress to anyone and makes efforts to be out of sight, they are unlikely to be fined.