THE announcement of the two- unitary decision by Local Government Minister John Healey came under heavy attack from veteran Labour MP Gwyneth Dunwoody.
The former minister, who represents Crewe and Nantwich, claimed the Government had used a written statement to avoid questions.
She accused Communities Secretary Hazel Blears of cynical and “venal” decisions and of disrespecting voters’ wishes.
The Government says the new structure will save taxpayers £16m a year and improve services.
But Mrs Dunwoody, who has strongly opposed the plans, warns they will actually cost taxpayers £100m.
She said: “I have rarely seen a decision like this taken with such cynicism and with so little respect of the interests of the average voter.”
Mrs Dunwoody claimed Ms Blears never “deigned” to explain the need for the change, which was being pushed through “irrespective of the needs or wishes of the population”.
She added: “I believe it is a decision which has been taken for the most venal and personal reasons and I find it wholly and deeply objectionable.”