Two Labour party members in Newham are taking a stand against the party’s national executive, claiming that the existing Newham Mayor, Sir Robin Wales, has been wrongly endorsed as the Labour candidate for the next mayoral election in 2018. They are trying to raise funds in order to make a legal case of this issue. But they still need £6000 to make a go of it, and they do not have much time left.
The two dissenters say they have a strong base of support among other local party members. On the CrowdJustice page they maintain that they are taking action so that the ballot which endorsed Wales as party candidate, yet again, will be seen to have been conducted in breach of the party’s own regulations.
“Undemocratic processes were used to swing the Trigger Ballot in Sir Robin’s favour, who has been in post since 2002”: this exemplifies the campaign rhetoric used on the crowdfunding page. It is being claimed that affiliated organisations cast votes in the ballot when they had no right to do so, and it is also being argued that affiliated organisations were in some cases encouraged to cast more than one vote – which wouldn’t be a fair and democratic thing in anybody’s rule book.
The two protesters go on to say that: “As the largest democratic socialist political party in Europe, it’s vital that the Labour Party advances the process of democratic renewal and accountability in our country so that voters have confidence in the values of Labour politics.”
With only a couple of weeks of fundraising still to go, it remains to be seen whether the campaigners will raise enough money to take up the case with Labour’s national party executive.