POLITICIANS were accused of behaving like children during heated debates at a council meeting.

The rebuke took place during a meeting and introducing Special Constables and how to tackle antisocial behaviour.

Senior figures at Southend Council were accused of putting personality and politics ahead of policy during a recent meeting.

Independent councillor Keith Evans said: “Listening to this is like listening to a school playground.

“It doesn’t matter what was said five or ten years ago.

“Let’s work together for residents.

“I’m not interested personally what the Tory Government did or what the Labour Government did.

“What the Southend public are interested in is this debate on community safety, whether that is in the north, south, east or west of Southend, let’s get on with it.

“I get really frustrated at this stone throwing and it is not necessary.

“It’s not for me to say this but being on the council someone asked me how my first two council meetings were and they said that’s politics, well it doesn’t have to be politics, let’s get this business dealt with for the community.”

Labour councillor Matt Dent, said: “I’ve detected a theme from the opposition , they complain about the lack of data gathering ignoring that they were running the council for years beforehand, they complain about the lack of progress on dealing with crime yet they were running the council previously.

“It is a bit like standing beside the burnt-out rubble of your home while being lectured on fire safety by the arsonist who just torched it. We need to move on from this.”

Lib Dem Councillor Peter Wrexham also criticised opposition councillors.

He said: “They have been in power for years but spent a minute in opposition and now have all these wonderful ideas of how the town should be run.” Tory Tony Cox implied for a second time in under a week that Independent Councillor Martin Terry, who oversees community safety, should resign for criticising the council’s community safety team on Twitter. Tensions are higher since the Labour-led administration ousted the Tories and took control.