GREEN and Labour politicians have been asked to release a “secret document” which allegedly contains details on how they will run the city.

The Conservatives on Brighton and Hove City Council want the parties to release the “Memorandum of Understanding” – a document confirmed to exist last month – in the interests of transparency.

But the Green leader, Phelim Mac Cafferty, said the parties have already made their pledge to work together on “key issues” public and criticised the Tories for creating “political party spats” amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Conservatives believe this document constitutes a “non-opposition” pact and are demanding for it to be released in the “interests of democracy”.

At a meeting held last month, the Green leader confirmed the existence of the document but refused to make it public when asked.

The Conservative Group Whip Robert Nemeth said the existence of a “secret document raises serious questions as to whether Labour should be referred to as the city’s opposition”.

“The health of any democracy requires a strong opposition,” he added.

“But how, for example, can Labour’s Housing spokesperson continue to be the ‘Opposition Spokesperson on Housing’ if there is a Joint Programme between Labour and the Greens that has been formalised in a secret agreement?

“The revelations were an incredibly serious matter of public interest and democracy in the city and I am calling for the immediate full release of the document.

“The public have a right to know what is in this secret agreement between Labour and the Greens and it is in the public interest that this document is released immediately.”

No single party has overall control on Brighton and Hove City Council.

Following the election in May last year, Labour was the largest party. Following suspensions and resignations, Greens are now the largest party.

At the Full Council meeting on October 22, Green leader, cllr Mac Cafferty, said his party had put out a statement on its website last year which stated “we are indeed working with the Labour Party”.

When Cllr Nemeth asked whether Cllr Mac Cafferty would release the Memorandum of Understanding, he said: “No I won’t”.

The Argus also asked the Greens whether they would release the document and, if they would not, why not.

In response, Cllr Mac Cafferty said: “Our city is facing some critical, and potentially hugely damaging challenges.

“In the midst of the pandemic affecting our health and economy, the threat of climate collapse and a housing crisis, we know the city needs action, not bitter political party spats.

“Given the strain our city is under, it’s deeply disappointing that Conservative councillors are focused on making this now year old pledge a bad news story.

“Now more than ever we need to pull together to support residents who are being dramatically affected by the pandemic.”

Councillor Nancy Platts, leader of the Labour Group, added: “ We will work in the best interests of our city, our residents and our local businesses.”

She added: “By focusing on outcomes, rather than politicking, Labour and Green Councillors have delivered a balanced budget, a city plan, and a strategic council plan to build more affordable housing, tackle the climate crisis and help create a city where the wealth we generate is shared more equally.”