Countdown is on to council elections.
WE tend to see more of our politicians when election time rolls round, which is hardly surprising.
When their political futures are at stake, they’re obliged to tell us exactly why we should vote for them.
For those up for re-election, it’s a case of showing just what they have achieved and setting out what they will do if given another term in office.
For those seeking election, it’s their job to convince us that they would do a better job than the person who currently occupies the post.
While some voters don’t like being doorstepped or stopped on the street – or dealing with the rafts of leaflets that land on their doormats – it’s important that politicians engage with the electorate. It’s how democracy works.
Without that engagement, turnout at elections will drop even lower, further undermining the democratic process.
So now that the list of those standing in the May 22 Leeds City Council elections has been finalised, we look forward to the candidates spending the next few weeks getting out into the communities they wish to represent.
This is the time for them to prove just why they should be entrusted with serving the needs of the area’s residents. After all, a close relationship between councillors and voters isn’t just good for democracy, it’s good for Leeds too.
City still learning the lessons of David’s fate
DAVID Olewale may have died 45 years ago, but as a city we’re still learning the lessons from his death.
An African immigrant, he not only suffered mental health problems but also racial abuse, harassment and brutality at the hands of the police. The exact circumstances surrounding his death remain shrouded in mystery.
Thankfully, a lot has changed since 1969, but plans for a memorial to him near where his body was pulled from the River Aire should be welcomed.
It will serve as a symbol of how far society has come, but also a reminder of the strides that still need to be made in the name of equality and justice for all.