A councillor currently under investigation for allegedly asking for political favours failed to attend a meeting he was meant to chair.

Cllr Roy Emmett, of Hainault ward, did not appear at a licensing committee meeting on Friday July 6 at 10.30am, despite being the elected chairman.

The former Labour chief whip blamed a diary mix-up for his absence and Conservative councillor Ruth Clark had to step up to chair the meeting instead.

Leader of Redbridge Conservative Group Cllr Linda Huggett said: "As a group we're very disappointed. We all get a corporate calendar and Cllr Emmett will have been emailed by the clerks as well. There is no excuse not to turn up.

"If he was ill or unavoidably stuck in traffic, that would be another matter, but just to say that he forgot and give no plausible excuse is unacceptable.

"If he can't be bothered to turn up then he should be replaced with someone who is prepared to carry out their responsibilities as a councillor.

"It doesn't bode well for the future and I shall be writing an email to the council leader to express our disappointment.

"If he was a member of our group, I would be having a very serious word with him, it's embarrassing."

Cllr Emmett is currently under investigation by the council’s monitoring officer for allegedly asking for political favours from the planning committee in 2016.

In an email regarding the future of a community centre in New North Road, Hainault, Cllr Emmett is alleged to have asked the chairman of the planning committee for support in an application for longer opening hours during Ramadan.

It indicated that the chair of the centre had asked for support from Labour members, and the centre had supported Labour candidates and made its premises available for a meeting between the council and local businesses.

The findings of that investigation are due to be released at the governance and assurance committee meeting on July 23 at 7.15pm.

Both council leader Cllr Jas Athwal and Cllr Roy Emmett were contacted for comment.