London Mayor Ken Livingstone has been found guilty of bringing his office into disrepute by comparing a Jewish reporter to a Nazi concentration camp guard.
Mr Livingstone was suspended from duty for four weeks from March 1 after being found guilty of bringing his office into disrepute. This is rather weird. Maybe the reporter was being unreasonable, so the Mayor made an unreasonable comment, but it was not like he threatened to kill him. People are too sensitive. I would of thought that Prince Harry wearing a nazi uniform to a party a year or two back would have been more off color than the Mayors comment. Did the Mayor know the reporter was Jewish? Even so it was a comparison not a accusation.
The three-man Adjudication Panel for England unanimously ruled that Mr Livingstone had been "unnecessarily insensitive and offensive" to Evening Standard reporter Oliver Finegold in February last year.
David Laverick, chairman of the disciplinary panel sitting in central London, said: "His treatment of the journalist was unnecessarily insensitive and offensive. He persisted with a line of comment likening the journalist's job to a concentration camp guard, despite being told that the journalist was Jewish and found it offensive to be asked if he was a German war criminal."
Mr Livingstone was not present at the hearing.
Since Mr Livingstone lost the case he must pay his own costs - estimated at more than £80,000. He can appeal the decision at the High Court.
London Mayor Ken Livingstone later said of the tribunal result: "This decision strikes at the heart of democracy. Elected politicians should only be able to be removed by the voters or for breaking the law."
I think that it is proposterous that a Mayor of anywhere let along London can be suspended for any amount of time for something said that really doesn't have anything to do with his job at hand. I am not condoning his comment, but what a waist of time and money to appease a journalist with hurt feelings.