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City Council backs suspended Administrative assistant

Selma City Council Administrative Assistant Temekia Sykes is a serving a two-day suspension after the altercation with Mayor Darrio Melton from Tuesday’s City Council meeting at City Hall.

The city council had a team-building meeting on Wednesday at Johnson’s Sports Bar & Grill.

Sykes returns to work on Friday. She appeared at the meeting, but declined to comment on the situation. Council President Corey Bowie said the Council unanimously supports her.

City council members present at the meeting were Bowie, Councilmen John Leashore and Michael Johnson and Councilwomen Angela Benjamin, Jannie Thomas and Susan Youngblood. Councilman Carl Bowline and Councilwoman Miah Jackson wasn’t present. Councilman Sam Randolph spoke via phone.

The council plans on getting Sykes a raise. She has worked for the city nine years.

“It’s building up for sometime,” Johnson said. “She’s been overworked and underpaid. She’s working for nine different council members. She doesn’t complain.”

Before working with Melton, Bowie suggested the council come together.

“We have to do a better job,” Bowie said. “We have to do a self-assessment of our own pitfalls.”

Youngblood echoed the theme of team unity.

“We haven’t been functioning as a team,” Youngblood said. “We need to do leadership things.”

Benjamin recommended the Mayor’s side and council to come together and work in unison for the city’s sake.

“The brokenness is between the two branches of government,” Benjamin said. “The lines of communication have been broken. We have to fix it.”

Thomas said workers should have a voice and not be afraid to speak.

Leashore said the dysfunction is on both sides.

“There’s a lot of backstabbing, conniving, scheming and cloaking,” Leashore said. “We need to be truthful to what our agendas are.”