I AM writing in reply to your correspondent Mike Holt and his accusation that I am creating “too many Tsars” and appointing so-called “cronies” to “jobs” as Mayoral advisors.

Firstly I think it is important to clarify that these new roles are not jobs or paid positions, but are unpaid advisory positions aimed at ensuring we have a wider and more inclusive range of expertise available to the new Mayoral Combined Authority.

Rather than creating a democratic deficit the creation of a directly elected Metro Mayor is about transferring power and resources from unelected and unaccountable civil servants in Whitehall.

Devolution is an important and decisive advance for our democracy.

Mayoral advisors have been chosen on the basis of their experience and expertise and include leaders from business, academia, the third sector and faith communities.

Politicians do not have a monopoly of wisdom and I believe that independent people from outside politics have a vital role to play in enhancing accountability and developing fresh ideas..

This is especially the case with the proposed Fairness and Social Justice Advisor Board that Lyn Collins has agreed to chair.

This body will play an important role ensuring that every decision we take and every policy we make is rigorously scrutinised for its impact on all those experiencing disadvantage across our City Region.

I think the creation of such a powerful independent body to hold those in power to account , underscores a real commitment to transparency, fairness and equity.

Steve Rotheram, Merseyside Metro Mayor.