Monday, July 25

Tight fisted Nattrass

A STAFFORD campaigner who claimed he was left out of pocket despite doing work for the United Kingdom Independence Party will get a pay-out of £1,255.
Paul Gilbert, the former regional organiser for UKIP, spent £255 of his own money booking a speaker for a party conference but was never reimbursed.
And he was not paid for administration work at the party’s Birmingham head office in May last year after his boss, MEP and Stone Parliamentary candidate Mike Nattrass, claimed he was hardly ever there.
At a small claims hearing at Stoke-on-Trent county court on Tuesday Deputy District Judge John Oldham ruled that Ukip should pay Mr Gilbert £255 for the speaker and £1,000 for work he carried out in May.
But Mr Gilbert’s claim that UKIP had not paid him for work he did in June last year was rejected by Mr Oldham. UKIP was also ordered to pay £100 towards Mr Gilbert’s court costs. The hearing heard that Mr Gilbert, of Little Haywood, was appointed as regional organiser for the party in 2003.
By February 2004 he was relieved of his duties by UKIP’s deputy leader Mike Nattrass, who asked him to do work for the party at its new head office instead, answering phones, processing cheques and banking.
Mr Gilbert said: "The volume of paperwork was considerable and the desk was not very secure. There were many interruptions from volunteers. It was not the best environment to work in. The security could not be maintained so I took work, including cheques, home. "I was still in the office regularly, probably at least three days a week until May 27."
But Mr Nattrass told the hearing he had asked Mr Gilbert to work from the head office so he could answer calls about the party as the inexperienced people in the office could not speak authoritatively.
"I was surprised when he did not attend the office and was surprised he took the cheques home when we had secure facilities at the office," he said.
"When the cheques were processed they should have been banked the next morning. As a chartered surveyor I would not expect to get paid if I did not do a job properly. We did not get value for money. I do not see that we owe him anything.
" Speaking afterwards Mr Gilbert said: "This vindicates bringing the case."
Mr Nattrass added: "I’m glad it’s all over."

Source: UKIP uncovered

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