Cllr. Robbins on the Private Eye and Guido Fawkes allegations about Cllr. Ali

I reprint below some correspondence that I have had with Cllr. Chris Robins, Leader of LBWF, concerning allegations involving his close colleague Cllr. Liaquat Ali and the latter’s family.

Most of Cllr. Robbins’ response to me, it hardly needs saying, is irrelevant, but I am struck by the line about ‘as a matter of routine’ not responding to ‘either publication’.

The allegations made are serious ones. Both Guido and Private Eye have substantial readerships, including many influential decision-makers (MPs, civil servants, etc.). In addition, the issue at stake clearly hits a popular nerve.

In general, no-one half decent likes the idea of rich individuals exploiting the local housing crisis. Moreover, Corbynistas, in particular, are likely to be impatient if they find that senior Labour elected representatives are simply replicating the supposed behavior of the dreaded one per cent.

Cllr. Robbins should have answered my question. That he did not seems to be as good an example of ‘cutting off your nose to spite your face’ as is possible to find, and again underlines his faltering grasp.


21 March 2016

Dear Cllr. Robbins,

You no doubt will have seen the recent allegations about your close colleague Cllr. Liaquat Ali in Private Eye and on the Guido Fawkes blog.

These are mediums that are read by hundreds of thousands of people, many highly influential.

Self-evidently, it brings both the Labour Party and London Borough of Waltham Forest into some disrepute to be associated with any wrongdoing, particularly of the nature contended.

Please can you state what you are doing about this?

Yours sincerely,

Nick Tiratsoo


19 April 2016

Dear Mr Tiratsoo

RE: Private Eye Issue 1413 – 4 to 17 March 2016 and Guido Fawkes Blog

Thank you for your email of 21 March 2016 regarding the above Private Eye article and Guido Fawkes blog.  Firstly please accept my apology for the delay in replying.

Regarding the comments made in the article and blog, we do not, as a matter of routine, respond to allegations from either publication.

This Council is committed to tackling housing conditions in the private rented sector, and in this regard, I would highlight the fact that Waltham Forest is one of a very small number of London local authorities that has introduced the borough-wide licensing of all of its private rented stock. Through this licensing regime, the Council is committed to driving up the standard of all rental properties and combating ASB.

I would like to reassure you that the Council will continue to be open and transparent in its approach to the enforcement of property licensing and other regulatory powers. It will apply sanctions or take appropriate formal action on a consistent basis, irrespective of whether or not the landlord is also an elected councillor.

I hope that this information is useful to you.

Yours sincerely,

Cllr Chris Robbins

Leader of Waltham Forest Council

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