FactCheck: Boris Johnson’s broken promises as London mayor

From Channel 4 News: In 2009, Boris Johnson promised to end rough sleeping within three years. He said: “It’s scandalous that, in 21st century London, people have to resort to sleeping on the streets, which is why I have pledged to end rough sleeping in the capital by 2012.”

But by his final autumn in office (2015), there were an estimated 940 people sleeping rough in the capital.

Over his tenure, rough sleeping rose by 130 per cent.

Mr Johnson made a number of opaque and downright misleading claims about the strength of the Metropolitan Police while he was mayor of London, which we FactChecked at the time.

At one point he announced: “We are recruiting 5,000 constables over the next three years”, which sounded like a welcome boost to Met police numbers.

He failed to mention that the Met expected to lose 5,000 PCs over three years through natural wastage – all he was promising to do was replace the ones who left.

Figures released to members of the London Assembly show that the Met had the equivalent of 33,404 full-time police officers (not including PCSOs or special constables) in November 2009.

That fell to 32,125 officers on March 31, 2016, shortly before Mr Johnson left office.

His 2012 manifesto promised to ‘double the number of special constables to 10,000′. At the end of his tenure in 2016, there were just 3,271 special constables in the Met, less than a third of his target.

Mr Johnson was an outspoken critic of the proposed third runway at Heathrow throughout his time as mayor, describing the proposal as a “mistake”, “self-defeating”, “short-termist” and “barbarically contemptuous of the rights of the population”.

When he returned to Parliament as the member for Uxbridge in 2015, he promised to “lie down in front of those bulldozers” to stop the expansion.

Things came to a head last June when members of the government, including Mr Johnson who was foreign secretary at the time, were required to vote in favour of the project in parliament.

Shortly before the vote, it emerged that Mr Johnson had travelled to Afghanistan and would miss it. He said that quitting the government to vote against the third runway, as his colleague Greg Hands had just done, would “achieve absolutely nothing.”

[Read full article on Channel 4 News FactCheck website…]