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Archive for October 9th, 2010

Lutfur Rahman promised me a statement on what has been happening and he’s now kept his word. His team has just sent me a leaflet that they’re delivering across the borough.

I’ve copied it below.

8 October 2010

Dear Resident,

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

http://www.christineshawcroft.co.uk/nec

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

Published and promoted by Gulam Robbani on behalf of Lutfur Rahman C/O 160 Old Montague Street, London E1 5NA

Printed by Printing Hub, Unit 5, Stonefield Way, South Ruislip, London HA4 0JS.

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