Divide and conquer

IT was reported that the merger with Cockburn would rob Kwinana residents of their voice and community identity.

Well surprise, surprise: that is how most of the City of Cockburn residents feel about the proposed killing off of their council area.

Moreover, we are not alone in this concern; residents of Bicton and Palmyra do not want to lose their community either.

As the global economy makes us feel lost in the bigger world picture, so we hang on even more tightly to the small community boundaries that give us a feeling of home and security.

None of us wants our community identity interfered with or destroyed; something Mr Barnett and his cronies have not grasped and probably they never will. Robbing residents of their community voice is the real purpose of this local government reform.

When the dust settles, if Mr Barnett has his way all these bigger councils will have only eight councillors to represent the vastly increased number of ratepayers in each area.

What kind of voice will these residents have against the power of wealth of the decision makers and property developers? If this is a democratic society, why then is local government reform not being put to a referendum?

Why are ratepayers not being given a legal opportunity to have their voices heard and their concerns addressed? The process of each council’s residents having to make submissions to the Local Government Advisory Board is certainly a legal method, but it is also an underhand example of divide and conquer.

JAN de GROOTE, Hamilton Hill