2 Mar

The Guardian’s Dave Hill, writing on his new blog, reports that another organisation has declared that its vote was improperly cast in last year’s mayoral trigger ballot:

A second organisation whose vote helped Newham mayor Sir Robin Wales go forward unopposed as Labour candidate for next year’s mayoral election in the borough has effectively substantiated a complaint by local party members about an aspect of the candidate selection process.

Inquiries by national officers of Bectu, the media and entertainment union, have concluded that a branch affiliated to Labour locally had not paid the required fee for 2016, the year the vote took place. In a letter to Labour’s governing National Executive Committee (NEC) sent in January, 47 Newham members had argued that the Bectu vote be declared void partly on those grounds.

Last month the national Fabian Society informed its Newham branch, which also voted “yes” to Sir Robin automatically becoming the candidate for 2018, had breached the society’s own rules for determining how votes in Labour affirmative nomination or “trigger ballots” should be cast.

The Bectu delegate that cast the vote in Sir Robin’s favour was Cllr Susan Masters, the secretary of the Labour Group of councillors. The signatory on the letter purportedly from Newham Fabians was Cllr Tahmina Rahman, mayoral advisor for New Media and Finance. Are we spotting a pattern?

Sir Robin “won” the trigger ballot by 20 votes to 17. Less these two it’s now 18-17, though arguably if the Fabians had held a proper members meeting they’d have voted No, making it 18-18. 

Whatever shaky mandate the mayor had to claim the nomination unopposed has now entirely vanished. Labour needs to cancel the result and run an open selection. It’s what members want and what they deserve.

2 Responses to “Unravelling”

  1. Birdman March 2, 2017 at 20:29 #

    Is it unravelling? The NEC have confirmed his nomination and local members are powerless to challenge the decision. Wales is going to stand and even if the majority of members refuse to campaign for him, he will get elected. His propaganda machine funded by the residents of Newham has not lost a beat. The Newham Mag promotes him in every issue and the money raised through the precept on Councillor’s allowances, pays for a professional machinery. None of this is ever challenged in the local rag and is not challenged by party members. Indeed, opponents of SRW still think the precept on allowances is a good idea. The Labour Party have got the candidate they deserve and the local electorate, for all the above reasons, struggle to see through the propaganda and continue to return the same old self serving overpaid people. It is encouraging that some of the more decent councillors are starting to see how bad the situation is but why weren’t they listening 10 years or more ago?

  2. scwalkermecom March 4, 2017 at 08:17 #

    18-18 is not a draw but a failure to affirm.

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