I’ve copied it below.
8 October 2010
Four weeks ago, Labour Party members in Tower Hamlets overwhelmingly voted for me to be their candidate
to be the Borough’s first directly-elected Mayor. I won by a majority of almost 200 first preferences votes than
the candidate in second place, in the 5th and final round the votes stood at Lutfur Rahman 433, John Biggs 251
and Helal Abbas at 157 and the Local and Regional parties both expressed confidence that the election had
been fair and democratic.
Then, on 20th September, Labour’s NEC received a complaint against me from one of my beaten opponents –
Cllr Helal Abbas. I was not notified of this complaint, let alone allowed to refute it, and the NEC did not
investigate the matter before deciding to remove me as Labour’s candidate. The NEC imposed Cllr Abbas as the
candidate, despite the fact he came a distant third in the election.
NEC member Christine Shawcroft gives an account of this show trial on her website at
Among Cllr Abbas’s allegations is his belief that I have been “brainwashed by fundamentalists” as well as
unsupported allegations that I ‘bought” members. Cllr Bill Turner, who ran Cllr Shiria Khatun’s unsuccessful
campaign to be the candidate has made similar allegations.
Let me be absolutely clear. I am not an Islamist, Islamic Supremacist, Fundamentalist or Entryist and
I have never paid for the subscription of another Labour member nor encouraged anyone else to do so.
Let me also be clear that no actual evidence of wrongdoing has been put forward and there has been
no open investigation into any of the allegations made against me.
Neither Cllr Abbas, nor Cllr Turner is impartial. Cllr Abbas has run against me three times – twice to be Leader,
once to be PPC and once to be Mayor. Cllr Turner managed the campaign of another unsuccessful candidate
and twice failed to make my cabinet selection.
The idea that a duly elected candidate can be removed on a whim and replaced by their accuser belongs in an
Orwellian nightmare – it does not belong in Labour party politics. If Ed Balls had made a complaint about Ed
Miliband, would the NEC have torn up the election result and made Ed Balls Leader? No, it would not.
In such circumstances, I’m afraid that my confidence in the NEC’s decision-making is shattered. I have appealed
to Ed Miliband asking him to commission an independent investigation into the way Labour’s Mayoral
selection has been conducted as well as the allegations against me.
However, I feel that the imposition of Cllr Abbas in my place is such an insult to natural justice that I have no
option but to stand as an Independent candidate in this election. My manifesto is exactly the same as the one I
drew up in partnership with local members as Labour’s candidate.
Eight Labour councillors in Limehouse, Poplar, Shadwell, Spitalfields, Stepney and Whitechapel have backed
me. A number of local Party officers and many ordinary members are supporting me too. I know that you want
to be loyal to the Labour Party and especially our new Leader and I’m not asking you to tear up your
membership card. But if Labour stands for anything it is FAIRNESS.
And I ask you – is there any fairness in the way I have been treated? If your answer to that question
is no, then please vote for me as your first preference on 21st October.
Cllr Lutfur Rahman
PS remember, your vote is between you and the ballot box!
CLLR. LUTFUR RAHMAN
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