Conservative candidate Festus Akinbusoye has been voted in as Bedfordshire’s new police and crime commissioner.
The father of teenage children, who currently sits on board of directors of a local YMCA, taking up the baton from former Conservative PCC Kathryn Holloway.
Former mentor to young offenders in prison, former Special Constable with Bedfordshire Police and former Board Member of a Further Education College.
He will take up the role officially on Thursday 13th May 2021 after he takes the oath to become the commissioner.
Mr Akinbusoye said he was committed to working with the government to address what he described as “the outdated and unfair funding formula which means Bedfordshire is funded as a rural policing area while having the crime demands of a large urban area.”
He wants to address the retention of police officers in Bedfordshire and the risk from organised crime gangs.
He also said he believes it’s important to focus on preventing harm to the most vulnerable residents, and wants to build a community-based and community-led policing model.
The new PCC pledged to recruit 100 volunteer mentors through the Bedfordshire Youth First Initiative, paid internships for 17-21 year olds and support pathways for parents and guardians.
He promised to live stream strategic board meetings between himself and the chief constable, and provide the opportunity for residents to ask questions.
He also plans to create police contact hubs in the borough to improve access to police services.
In the first round of results, Mr Akinbusoye took the lead with 51,700 votes (42.4%).
Labour’s David Michael got 42,708 (35%) votes, the Lib Democrat Jas Parmer got 15,983 (13.1%), independent candidate Mark Hamill got 8,279 (6.8%) while English Democrat Antonio Vitiello got 3,387 (2.8%).
Following the second count, Mr Akinbusoye won 59,793 votes, compared to Mr Michael’s 50,815.