Coventry councillor resigns from cabinet after breaking COVID rules

Cllr Tariq Khan was filmed breaking COVID rules while attending an illegal gathering of reportedly around 200 people.

Coventry Council House on Earl Street, Coventry

A Coventry councillor who was filmed breaking social distancing rules at an illegal gathering that had to be broken up by police has resigned from the city’s cabinet.

West Midlands Police broke up an illegal gathering, reportedly of around 200 people, at Edgwick Park in Foleshill last month.

Cllr Tariq Khan, a cabinet member at Coventry City Council, was seen breaking social distancing rules at the event and was filmed shaking hands with people.

A spokesperson for the Council said they “condemn this behaviour”.

Independent councillor Glenn Williams raised the issue at a full council meeting on Tuesday calling on Cllr Khan, who was not in attendance, to “resign his position in the cabinet”, adding that he had “undermined the message of this council”.

On Thursday, the Coventry Conservatives groups called for a vote of no confidence in Cllr Khan because of his actions.

Later that day, the Labour councillor resigned from his position as the Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing with immediate effect but will remain a councillor for the Foleshill ward, which he has represented since 2010.

Leader of the Conservative group, Cllr Gary Ridley, said in a tweet that Cllr Khan had “taken his time” to resign, but that it was “the right decision”.

Council Leader George Duggins said in a statement: “I would like to place on record the tremendous work Tariq has achieved over the last 18 months as Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing.

“He has worked hard and with officers has made some significant progress especially in the work around housing and homelessness during that time.

“I will not be making any further comment on this matter but will be announcing a replacement in the near future.”