Birmingham MPs have demanded the resignation of a council cabinet member, as they launched an unprecedented attack on the local authority in the House of Commons.
Coun John Lines (below), the cabinet member for housing, was accused of "hiding" the problem of homelessness in the city.
Northfield MP Richard Burden (Lab Northfield) challenged him to prove claims he was simply complying with Government policy - or quit his £42,247 cabinet job.
The MP was speaking in a Commons debate, accompanied by fellow Labour MPs Steve McCabe (Hall Green), Lynne Jones (Selly Oak) and Gisela Stuart (Edgbaston).
Labour claims tenants who are forced to leave their homes for legitimate reasons are being denied help from the council - unless they fight the eviction in court.
The policy has caused needless worry and expense for both tenants and landlords, the MPs say. The council is run by the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats in partnership.
Coun Lines (Con Bartley Green) insists the authority is complying with advice issued by the Government.
Speaking in the House of Commons, Mr Burden said: "The policies adopted by the coalition running the city council are nothing short of scandalous."
He added: "What it does do is enable the city council to reduce the numbers it defines as threatened with homelessness. They are, it seems, massaging the figures."
The MP said: "There has been enough delay, if Councillor Lines is not able to produce the instruction he publicly alleged Birmingham had received from Government on the issue of court procedures, I believe it is time for Councillor Lines to consider his position and resign."
Coun Lines said: "This is mischief-making by a Labour MP. This whole issue was raised following an enquiry to Richard Burden from a private landlord who wanted to evict their tenant without observing due process. We aim to protect tenants... It may not be what Mr Burden likes, but this is our duty."