Lib Dems choose their election man

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LIB Dem general election hopeful Francis Oppler has pledged to pay freeze if he is chosen as the next MP for Bognor Regis.

Francis has been selected as his party’s candidate in the next general election in 
May 2015.

He said it was time for a change in the Bognor Regis and Littlehampton constituency after 17 years with Conservative MP Nick Gibb.

“National politicians are utterly out of touch with the lives of local people. The proposed 11 per cent pay increase for MPs is a national disgrace.

“At a time when people’s real incomes have tumbled, it is immoral for politicans to vote through a pay increase for themselves. The current salary is more than adequate.

“If I was elected as the local MP, I would refuse to take any increase in salary for the whole of the five-year parliament.

“If under the rules I had to accept the increase, I would donate the difference to local charities.

“I challenge Conservative MP Nick Gibb to do the same pledge. He must make clear to local residents now what he intends 
to do.”

Francis, 52, of Hawthorn Road, moved to Bognor when he was two. He was brought up in a single-parent family and received free school meals at Nyewood and Bognor Comprehensive schools before he went to Chichester College of Technology for City and Guilds catering.

He worked as a chef before joining office equipment 
firms Jennings and then A Healey from 1986-2011. He now 
runs his own office equipment firm.

His public political career stretches back to 1989 when he became a local councillor. He has since been involved in many campaigns.

This is his first time as a general election candidate. He said: “I know it is going to be a tough fight and I need to ensure we put right the lies spread by papers like the Daily Mail and our political opponents.”

He pointed to Lib Dem achievements in the coalition such as cutting income tax, and free school meals for all under-sevens.