The Labour Party in Waltham Forest

John Cryer MP speaks out on Labour anti-semitism UPDATED

Currently, the BBC is running a story about John Cryer and Labour’s anti-semitism: ‘A senior Labour MP has said he is shocked at some of the anti-Semitic tweets by party members that come before its disciplinary panel. John Cryer said some of what is written “makes your hair stand up”, adding: “This stuff is redolent of the 1930s.” He was speaking at a fringe de... »

Cllr. Liaquat Ali’s new Cabinet role: a square peg in a round hole?

A couple of weeks ago, the incoming LBWF Leader Clare Coghill announced her first Cabinet, and one of the most notable developments is that she has moved Cllr. Liaquat Ali MBE JP from the community safety portfolio to take on ‘Transformation and Commercial Operations’, covering everything from ‘digital and smart technology’, via ‘revenues and benefits’, and ‘civil contingencies’, to ‘financial sus... »

Councillor Saima Mahmud’s surreptitious Town Hall award ceremonies: a further update

Regular readers of this blog will remember that last year’s Mayor, Cllr. Saima Mahmud, hosted surreptitious award ceremonies, organised by two private citizens, in the Mayor’s Parlour; and that the beneficiaries of these events included several controversial figures. The most unpleasant without doubt was the Pakistani Senator Sirajul Haq, a man known, amongst other things, for ranting about the Je... »

Waltham Forest Labour begins the selection process for the next council elections…and Momentum bottles it

The closing date for applications to stand for Labour at the next council election has just passed, and fevered rumours are circulating about who has, and has not, put themselves forward. I understand that three sitting councillors have called it a day – Peter Barnett (most famous for his late night Facebook spat with Cllr. Dhedi), Angie Bean, and one time big-shot Johar Khan (who appears still to... »

LBWF and Community Ward Forums: a further blow to local democracy

I have written previously about LBWF’s gradual strangulation of Community Ward Forums, and it would appear that this unfortunate trend is now reaching its logical end point, with, perhaps unexpectedly,  Conservative hands on the wind pipe. A motion presented by Conservative Councillors Siggers and James to the Council meeting in December 2016 sounded the death knell. It argued that though Communit... »

Momentum in Waltham Forest: the promise and the reality UPDATED

As is well known by now, Momentum promises a ‘new politics’, one characterised by, amongst other things, openness, transparency, and enhanced democratic participation. Since this blog has always supported such unarguably laudable values, it is worth asking whether the Momentum group here in Waltham Forest is walking the walk, that is living up to the aims of the organisation as a whole. Predictabl... »

STOP PRESS: Coghill replaces Robbins as Labour Group Leader

Labour councillors have just completed voting for their new Group Leader, and the results are as follows: Clare Coghill 30 Nadeem Ali 9 Gerry Lyons 1 Two of those eligible to vote did not attend (one was away, one sick) while another is currently suspended. It is said that Gerry Lyons’ single vote was cast by….Gerry Lyons. Amusement aside, however, it will be interesting to see what if... »

LBWF backs down on proposed changes to its Council Tax Support scheme

Some good news for a change. A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about Labour’s plan to drastically increase the proportion of council tax that the poorer sections of society would be required to pay in the forthcoming financial year. However, I now understand that, due to pressure from Labour’s rank and file, in tandem with the opposition of ‘some’ councillors, the rate will st... »

Waltham Forest Labour and anti-semitism (2)

This speaks for itself and is fairly shocking: http://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/166110/labour-branch-chair-praised-activist-suspended-over-antisemitism In the past, Labour and anti-semitism stood at opposite poles, but now it seems to be a different story. »

Cllr. Clare Coghill and her ‘little list’

Politicians who brandish ‘little lists’ seem more prone than most to getting into trouble. The prime example is of course one-time Minister Peter Lilley, who pulled this trick in a speech at the 1992 Conservative conference, received widespread opprobrium, and then disappeared into obscurity. Now Labour Councillor Clare Coghill – thought to be Leader Chris Robbins’ choice as his successor – ... »

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