An emergency Wycombe District Council meeting to decide whether or not to pursue with a plan to create two new unitary councils in Bucks descended into chaos, with councillors criticised for “name calling and abandoning protocol.”

Councillors gathered to decide whether or not to support the district councils’ proposals for two new unitary authorities.

However, the important meeting was disrupted countless times by what cllr Julia Wassell called the “usual name calling and time-wasting.”

Labour representative for Bowerdean, Rafiq Raja, said he was “surprised” to see “so many empty spaces” at the meeting and accused some councillors of being “past their sell-by date”, even calling one of them “councillor whinge.”  

He added: “This shows no pro-active action at all. If they were, we would have been talking about this a long time ago.

“I can see councillor whinge laughing, but councillor whinge is always whingeing. A lot of people are past their sell-by date, they either moan or groan.

“If we have a new unitary council, you have got to realise that you can’t stand around looking like a peacock. You are all very good at slapping each other on the back and saying well done, that’s a great report.

“I'm not sure if any of you actually read these reports when you say they are brilliant.”

Even leader of the council, Katrina Wood, chimed in, calling cllr Raja “discourteous” for mentioning empty seats.

She said: “I know that several people are ill tonight and although wanted to come, did not want to spread their germs around, although I did offer to sit them amongst you over there.”

Cllr Khalil Ahmed also told Dominic Barnes, deputy leader, to “grow up” and denounced councillors for laughing and talking while he was trying to speak, forcing council chairman, Mahboob Hussain, to interject and call for silence.

Cllr Steven Broadbent, conservative representative for Greater Hughenden, took to Twitter after the meeting to criticise the “poor quality” of the discussion.

He said: “Poor quality of debate tonight by the labour opposition in the council chamber at WDC, resorting to name calling and abandoning protocol.”