A NEWPORT Labour councillor is facing an investigation within his group after a senior colleague he called arrogant complained about him, the Argus understands.

Cllr Miqdad Al-Nuaimi is set to be interviewed by the city council Labour party today following a letter to him from the group’s chief whip Trevor Watkins.

Earlier this month the councillor accused Cllr Bob Poole of being arrogant and making rash judgements unbecoming of his post as cabinet member for education.

The attack, addressed to Cllr Poole but sent by e-mail to all Newport councillors, is possibly the most significant public row among the city council’s Labour group since it took over the authority in May 2012.

Yesterday Cllr Al-Nuaimi told the Argus: “I’m not happy that I’ve received a letter from the chief whip but my intention is to attend.”

“There is a charge, prompted by a complaint from Cllr Bob Poole,” he said, adding he intended to “refute the charge completely”.

The Argus understands that Stow Hill’s Cllr Al-Nuaimi will be interviewed by party whips, currently Cllr Allan Morris, Cllr Watkins, Cllr John Guy and Cllr Emma Garland.

The interview is the first stage of an investigation, which may or may not be followed by disciplinary action.

But it would be up to the Labour group to decide whether to take such a step.

Cllr Al-Nuaimi sent the email earlier in January after the cabinet member declined to answer questions over the controversial decision to merge the Gaer Infant and Junior schools.

He had told Cllr Poole: “Your arrogant and woefully inadequate response to my question has clearly demonstrated your unwillingness to be accountable.

"Your failure to substantiate statements you made shows that you are prone to make rash and unfair judgements, unbecoming of the responsible position you hold.

“You also lack the sensitivity and graciousness to admit to mistakes.”

The Argus could not contact Cllr Poole.