TORY Sir Graham Bright was elected Cambridgeshire’s first police and crime commissioner, beating Labour’s Ed Murphy after two rounds of voting.

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Sir Graham failed to get an outright majority after the first round of voting, pulling in some 23,731 votes to Murphy’s 17,576, but passed the crucial 50 per cent plus one vote ratio after the second round, where he pulled in 7,909 second choice votes.

He said: “I realise that I will have to be the face of the public and represent the public to the police and I will literally be going flat-out to ensure that I do that.

“To all those people who didn’t vote or who ruined their ballot paper, I don’t hold it against you because I represent all of the public and I will be doing that from tomorrow onwards.”

Beaten Labour candidate Ed Murphy was quick to criticise the “abysmal” turnout in the election, just 15.25 per cent across the county, and called on the public to keep a close eye on Sir Graham as he starts his term as commissioner.

He said: “As time has gone on, candidates have indicated that they won’t privatise the police and I hope they stick to that.

“I ask people to watch what happens to our police service and to question what happens.”

Turnout across Cambridgeshire came in at just 15.25 per cent. Turnout in East Cambridgeshire was just 12.93 per cent followed by 12.98 per cent in Fenland.

South Cambridgeshire managed15.9 per cent and 15.3 per cent turned out in Huntingdonshire.

Peterborough came back with the highest voter turnout, recording some 17.45 per cent.

The vote counting took place at Soham Village College on Friday with the winner announced shortly after 5.30pm

Other candidates in the running for the £70,000-a-year post were: Ansar Ali, Independent, Sir Graham Bright, Conservative Party, Paul Bullen, UK Independence Party (UKIP), Stephen Goldspink, English Democrats, Farooq Mohammed, Independent, Rupert Moss-Eccardt, Liberal Democrat and Ed Murphy, Labour Party.

Sir Graham took the ‘Oath of Impartiality’ in the presence of the Police Area Returning Officer John Hill, chief executive of East Cambridgeshire District Council, immediately after being announced as the winning candidate.

He pledged to: “Serve the people of Cambridgeshire…..act with integrity and diligence…give a voice to the public, especially victims of crime, and work with other services to ensure the safety of the community and effective criminal justice.”

The Pledge also states that Sir Graham will “take all steps” to ensure the transparency of his decisions and “will not interfere with the operational independence of police officers.”

Speaking afterwards, Sir Graham said: “I’m delighted to have been elected as Cambridgeshire’s first Police and Crime Commissioner.

“It has been a long campaign and I want to get to work on 22 November representing the community and being the face of the public, not the police. I am looking forward to meeting the Chief Constable and working with him and our partners to tackle the issues that residents tell me cause them most concern.”

Chief Constable Simon Parr said: “I am pleased the uncertainty about who will be Cambridgeshire’s first Police and Crime Commissioner has come to an end. I am looking forward to meeting Sir Graham and getting on with the job of working with him to take on the challenges we jointly face.”

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