Lewisham Council’s cabinet meeting to reconsider the vote on the Millwall Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) was cancelled after officers received a document that is now being investigated.
While it is unclear who is undertaking the investigation, the cabinet was advised by Kevin Flaherty, the clerk to the council, that there would be no discussion on the matter this evening.
Council officers are said to have received copies of the document on Tuesday.
The News understands that Mr Flaherty said in a letter to members: “I am writing to you about the reconsideration of the September 7 decision to use a compulsory purchase order for the New Bermondsey site.
“I am informed that council officers yesterday received copies of a document that is now subject of an external investigation.
“Depending on the outcome of the investigation the document may be referred to other authorities.
“The council needs to be satisfied about the veracity of the document. Because of the ongoing investigation it is not possible to consider the matter this evening. It is not anticipated there will be any discussion this evening.”
The matter will now be adjourned to another meeting in the future.
Lewisham’s cabinet approved the CPO plans three weeks ago, which would see land used by the Millwall Community Trust and the car park bought by the council before being sold to Renewal as part of a 2,400 home development.
The cabinet were told to “review” their decision by the Overview and Business Scrutiny Panel last week, after they “felt that a compelling case in the public interest was not made”.
Councillor Alan Hall, chair of the Business Panel, said: “The Compulsory Purchase Order decision would have been in place now if scrutiny Councillors had not referred this matter back to the Cabinet.
“The discovery of a new document that is serious enough to halt the democratic process needs to be explained fully and no further action on the CPO can proceed until then.”
A Lewisham Council spokesman said: “Council officers received a copy of a document on September 27 which is now the subject of external investigation.
“Depending on the outcome of that investigation, the document may be referred to other authorities. In reconsidering its decision on the CPO, the Council needs to be satisfied as to the veracity or otherwise of the document, and any potential impact it may have.
“Further reconsideration of the CPO has therefore been adjourned to a future meeting of the Council’s Mayor & Cabinet. Notice of the meeting at which this matter will be reconsidered again will be given at the appropriate time.”