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Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner election’s £3million ad campaign slammed for ‘narrow agenda’

By John Paul Shammas

The £3million advertising campaign to swell Manchester’s Police and Crime Commissioner election turnout is being attacked for its ‘narrow agenda’.

The Lib Dem candiate Matt Gallagher, the only Greater Manchester police candidate to have served as a police officer, believes the advertising campaign, which includes advertising during the X-Factor, is not telling voters what the election is really about.

A researcher officer at the Electoral Reform Society told MM yesterday that he believes the turnout for November’s inaugural PCC elections will stand at an embarrassingly low 18.5 percent.

And Mr Gallagher feels the Government’s desperate £3million spending to prevent disaster striking the Tory-initiative is not working whatsoever.

He said: “I am still meeting people who have no idea what the election is about.

“The current advertisements focus on one aspect of the Commissioner’s role. There is much more to reducing crime than the narrow agenda displayed in the advertisements.”

The adverts claim that ‘criminals hope you don’t do anything’ on November 15, however they do little to explain why.

And Robert Oxley, the campaign manager at the Tax Payers Alliance, is also concerned about the ramifications of blow-out spending on advertising.

He said: “Given the huge amount of money spent on advertising the elections the low turnout will lead some to question the new roles.”

However he did speak positively of the new role of Police Commissioner.

“Ultimately the low turnout should be seen as a judgement on the timing of the elections, not on giving more power to people over the way they are policed,” he said.

The Police and Crime Commissioner elections will take place on November 15.

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