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Archive for May 4th, 2012

I’m told these are the results for the Weavers by-election in Tower Hamlets:

John Pierce (Labour) 1544

Abjol MIah (Lutfur Respect) 1260

Caroline Kerswell (Conservative) 415

Alan Duffell (Green) 373

Azizur Rahman Khan (Lib Dem) 208

If so, big sigh of relief for Labour, a pretty good performance for the Greens, yet another disaster for the Lib Dems and a very strong showing by Lutfur’s Independents/Respect in what should have been a Labour walkover.

Labour will take heart from this and it maintains their strategic control over the full council. If they’d lost Josh Peck’s leadership of the group would have been questioned far more.

If Ken Livingstone loses tonight, expect to see the likes of Oli Rahman, Shahed Ali and Rania Khan being tempted to rejoin Labour. Labour will want to see this as the beginning of the end for Lutfur. Long, long way to go though…

UPDATE – 1pm

Labour group leader Josh Peck tells me via Twitter: “Oliur and Rania will never rejoin the Labour Group under my leadership – nor will any of the others. I never mourned their loss!” He added later that the sentiment also applies to Shahed Ali, Abdul Asad, Rofique Ahmed. This is where we might see the lines being drawn for a potential challenge to his leadership next week.

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Weavers count – over to you

As I’ve got to do my day job and write Sunday’s fish and chip paper today, I won’t be at the Weavers count. So I’ll leave it to any readers there to report from the scene, either by sending in comments directly or by email or text and I’ll update as we go along.

One thought: the BBC are reporting this morning that Respect winning five seats in Bradford was a “great night for Galloway”. Was it really? They fielded 11 targeted candidates and  won only five, just weeks after a thumping by-election victory there. And the council seats weren’t George’s priority anyway: he knows full well they were after a Yes vote in the mayoral referendum there. Only on Monday, Galloway boasted this in the Guardian:

“Put your house on it – we will win the mayoralty of Bradford in November.”

Bradford voted no by 55% to 45% last night.

Can Abjol Miah salvage a “great night” for LutfurRespect?

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