8 min read

Dr No Show and the Politics of Protecting Politicians Ahead of Patients

Dr No Show and the Politics of Protecting Politicians Ahead of Patients

Alongside the challenges faced at Royton and Medlock Medical Centres, at which both Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN is the GP Partner, there is a parallel scandal emerging regarding his role in a company called Bardoc Limited. This is what the Lib Dem Councllor Mark Kenyon is quoted as saying after his colleague Cllr HAMBLETT revealed details of a contract between Oldham Council and Bardoc Limited.

"While Labour were decrying dodgy Tory Covid deals, Oldham Council paid over £600k to a healthcare company owned by the Labour cabinet member for health.

The following are subsequent direct quotes from Oldham Council leader AMANDA CHADDERTON and Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN after the Lib Dems revealed that Oldham Council had paid over £600,000 to BARDOC Limited and that Dr CHAUHAN had failed to declare this.

“This is a complete non-story, Zahid declared his conflict of interest and was not involved in any decision making relating to payments made to Bardoc Ltd."
"Zahid took legal advice on his declarations and was informed that his declarations were correct. The Lib Dems know this as they have been informed by the Chief Executive already."
“It is also relevant to point out that Bardoc is a not for profit organisation and operates as a social enterprise."

Dr CHAUHAN, Oldham Council's Deputy Mayor is quoted as stating the following;

“As a public servant I am committed to holding myself to the highest of standards."
“I have always reported any interests and have acted with integrity and in accordance with my duties. I have always sought advice and approval from the Council and it’s officers when required. In respect of the NHS contract for swabbing services, I ensured that any possible conflicts of interest were declared."
“Bardoc is not “my” company as the Liberal Democrats seek to suggest and I did not receive any personal payments in relation to the contract for swabbing services."

Despite what AMANDA CHADDERTON and Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN claim, there is the small matter of a paper trail which clearly shows that whilst Bardoc is registered as a not for profit organisation (by virtue of it being registered under the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act 2014), this is not the same as people not making able to make a profit from it.

This video, with evidence collated from several days and nights of painstaking research, evidences how since this not for profit organisation was created, Bardoc declared in its own accounts payments made directly to DR ZAHID CHAUHAN and one of his companies totalling over £500,000. Though there is nothing libellous in the video, and nowhere do I allege any fraud by Dr CHAUHAN, I'd watch it before it is removed for a claim of libel.

The total paid out by Bardoc, in what are listed as 3rd party transactions to all of its registered directors/trustees/management committee members, amounts to well over £1 million. The paper trail ends in March 2020 and this figure excludes any further payments made to Dr CHAUHAN or his colleagues between March 2020 and now.  Figures for the last 2 years are yet to be published.

The £500,000 plus also excludes the salary Dr CHAUHAN is paid as CEO of Bardoc, a role he has declared with Oldham Council as receiving an income from. Here is a screenshot of the relevant section from his Register of Members Interest. You can see that he confirms CEO, BARDOC as one of what I make out to be 18 sources from which he carries out roles 'for profit or gain'. Unless it is trading under a different name, Medlock Medical Practice does not appear to be listed.

In her attempts to protect Dr CHAUHAN, Oldham Council leader AMANDA CHADDERTON can clearly been seen drawing attention to the not for profit status of Bardoc to defend her colleague. I’m left wondering if she was aware of the huge sums of money Bardoc had paid out to Dr CHAUHAN in what is listed in official accounts as 3rd Party transactions? And now that this has been set out, does the leader of Oldham Council still stick by her original defence of philanthropy?

Surely, if as the Labour Party leader of Oldham Council claims, that it is relevant to point out that Bardoc is a not for profit organisation, it is also of equal relevance to draw attention to the £1million plus that those in charge of the company have claimed for themselves?

Furthermore, AMANDA CHADDERTON's claims that 'Zahid declared his conflict of interest and was not involved in any decision making relating to payments made to Bardoc Ltd' is problematic to accept on face value. This was Dr CHAUHAN's declaration in the relevant section where I would expect to have seen him declare his conflict of interest in respect of contracts awarded to a company he is the CEO of. His response is 'not aware'.

The contradiction is clearly evident. Even if we put aside Dr CHAUHAN's claim that he was 'not aware' of any contract made between himself or a body in which he is CEO of and has a beneficial interest (Bardoc), then how was it possible that he declared conflicts that he was 'not aware' of? And of equal importance, just where were these conflicts declared. There has to be a paper trail.

Though Chief Executive HARRY CATHERALL is indirectly quoted in the local press as declarations being made to 'close colleagues', Oldham Council is yet to share evidence of who these 'close colleagues' were, where and how it was declared, and most importantly, whether the way these declarations were made fulfilled Dr CHAUHAN's legal obligations under the Localism Act. I doubt we will ever receive an explanation from any party involved.

Perhaps, there is a different form through which councillors declare their interests. I don't know. And even if there was, this declaration, which he signed on the 27th June 2022, should make reference to the contracts Oldham Council have confirmed they awarded Bardoc. The Liberal Democrats are therefore 100% correct to raise concerns, especially as Dr CHAUHAN confirms that he is 'committed to holding myself to the highest of standards'.

Oldham Lib Dems accused of ‘smearing’ deputy mayor over ‘false’ financial allegations
Oldham Liberal Democrats have accused the deputy mayor of failing to declare payments. However, Cllr Chauhan ‘vehemently’ denies any wrongdoing.

Thought Dr CHAUHAN claims Bardoc is ‘not my company’, the paper trail is also clear. As well as identifying himself as the CEO of Bardoc in his Register of Members Interest to Oldham Council, his name appears repeatedly on their annual accounts were he is listed as a Director. His signature even appears in the submission of the last set of accounts published. Here is a link to the Mutuals Public Register held by the Financial Conducts Authority. Have a look at the documents yourself.

Mutuals Public Register: BARDOC Limited

You can clearly see that Dr CHAUHAN's name is first listed as on 'the committee of management' as far back as March 2013. In the most recent return on 31st March 2020, Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN's name appears as one of the organisation's 4 Directors.

He even signs of multiple documents in the returns including;

  • Strategic Report for the year ending 2020
  • Officers Report for the year ending 2020
  • Group Balance Sheet
  • Society Balance Sheet

Even the relevant section on Related party transactions makes reference to payments made to Dr CHAUHAN and a company owned by him - AZ MEDICS.

To claim Bardoc is not his company, I find at best an attempt at a play on words and at worst it is misleading or even dishonest. He is both the declared CEO of the company and has also held a senior position as one of the directors/trustees/members of the management committee since 2013. Under such circumstances, I do not understand how Dr CHAUHAN can try and distance himself from his role at BARDOC and claim BARDOC is not his company. But then, as evidenced below, this is the same Doctor whose name after being initially hidden, then disappeared from the website of Royton Medical Centre after the damning and horrific failings identified by the Care Quality Commission.

  1. Following the publication of the CQC report I went to check details of the GP's registered at Royton GP practice. I could only find Dr T Chauhan listed as a Managing GP Partner. However, when I clicked on his name, Dr Zahid Chauhan's name could still be seen.

2. Once I shared this anomaly via my initial transmission where I brought to public attention Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN's role at Royton Medical Centre, the next time I checked the same link, the reference to him had been removed from the exact same page.

3. There is also no reference to Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN under the meet the team section of their webpage.

4. Despite the circumstances in which Dr ZAHID CHAUHAN's name was first hard to find and then removed from the website of Royton Medical Centre, the Care Quality Commission clearly references him as one of the 2 partners there.

I'll leave it to you to decide what has gone on here, just as I leave it to you to decide if Dr CHAUHAN is right to claim BARDOC is not his company.

Dr CHAUHAN failed to meet with patients from his surgeries and provide them with the reassurance many came to last night’s public meeting hoping to receive from him. He did not show. Having listened to the organisers, he did not even have the courtesy to respond to his invitation. I’ve been informed he has gone on holiday. I wasn’t sure if the multiple sources who told me this are joking or whether they were actually serious.

What I do know for certain, having listened to the harrowing testimonies of patients of Royton Medical Centre that did attend the meeting, is that this matter will not go away without urgent intervention. Dr CHAUHAN, Oldham Council leader AMANDA CHADDERTON, JIM McMAHON MP and Cllrs BASHFORTH treated the people of Royton with nothing other than contempt in failing to show to a public meeting. Maybe if there had been samosas on offer...

These people can run, they can hide, they can use their wealth and power to threaten and intimidate. But in the end, at the ballot box, they are accountable.

Do Not Fear Them. Do Not Fear Any Of Them.

Sadly the Recusant Nine transmissions look as though they will end at Xmas. Having launched the 50x50 sponsorship campaign, so far we are at just 10 pledges. Whilst I’m extremely grateful to everyone that has so far committed to support me with a monthly payment of £50 and/or partner with others to do so, we're nowhere near securing an amount that comes anywhere near minimum wage.

For the last 4 years, I have exposed Council corruption and the cover up of the grooming and gang rape of children in Oldham. If you find what I share of value, please support my work by buying a coffee, contributing via PayPal or subscribing to the website.