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Newham councillors welcome call to cancel trigger ballot result

PUBLISHED: 13:00 28 December 2017 | UPDATED: 13:00 28 December 2017

Sir Robin Wales

Sir Robin Wales

Newham Cll PR

Two councillors have welcomed mayor of Newham Sir Robin Wales’ call for Labour to cancel the result of the controversial trigger ballot.

Cllr Kay Scoresby Picture: Robin LittleCllr Kay Scoresby Picture: Robin Little

Cllrs John Whitworth and Kay Scoresby both put their names forward as potential mayoral candidates at the end of last year if the result of the trigger ballot was for an open selection process, rather than automatically putting the incumbent Sir Robin as the party’s candidate.

Sir Robin won the trigger ballot with 20 votes to 17 thanks to most affiliates backing him - but 11 out of 20 Labour electoral wards called for the involvement of other candidates.

In a statement issued on December 21, he explained that he would be “supporting a new process to be undertaken under the auspices of the national or regional Labour Party”, having called for the previous result to be scrapped after legal action was launched.

This was set to focus around the allegation that Labour’s governing body, the National Executive Committee (NEC), failed to investigate any allegations of wrong-doing.

Cllr John WhitworthCllr John Whitworth

Those criticising the process claimed that some of the affiliated organisations voted more than once in the trigger ballot - known as the affirmative nomination process - while others did not as the rules were “inconsistently applied and explained”.

Cllr Whitworth, who represents West Ham, was the first to throw his hat into the ring last year and said: “There is not enough time for another trigger ballot process. The Labour Party must organise an open democratic selection for a range of Newham Labour Party candidates including Robin to be chosen democratically and fairly as our Labour candidate in 2018.”

Cllr Scoresby, who represents Canning Town North, added: “We need to bring and unite the local party together once again and for all let them decide in an open, honest and transparent process who should be our mayoral candidate.

“Trust East Ham and West Hammers to do the right thing for the party and the people of Newham. An open selection of candidates. A secret ballot. One member. One vote. Democracy rules.”

The election for the mayor of Newham, along with ward councillors, is set to take place on Thursday, May 3.

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