Next mayor of Newham will be chosen by an open selection

PUBLISHED: 17:09 12 February 2018 | UPDATED: 17:09 12 February 2018

Sir Robin Wales is the current mayor of Newham. Picture: Newham Council

Sir Robin Wales is the current mayor of Newham. Picture: Newham Council

Newham Council

There will be an open selection to choose Newham’s next mayor, it has been announced today.

Cllr Rokhsana Fiaz is standing as a candidate.Cllr Rokhsana Fiaz is standing as a candidate.

In a second trigger ballot by East Ham and West Ham Labour party affiliates, voters opted against the incumbent mayor, Sir Robin Wales, automatically becoming the candidate for May’s elections.

In December 2016, an initial trigger ballot ran to decide whether Sir Robin would be put forward automatically, or whether there would be an open selection process, giving others the chance to run.

Sir Robin won 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.

After legal action was launched, he called for the result to be scrapped.

The vote was re-run and it was announced on Monday morning that this time round, voters had opted for an open selection process.

Councillor Julianne Marriott, Labour Party campaigner, said: “It was inevitable that there would be an open selection in Newham.

“I just wish we hadn’t wasted six weeks getting there – we could have selected our candidate by now and be out campaigning to get them elected.”

The Labour Party confirmed the result of the vote via Twitter and in an email to members.

Two weeks ago, Custom House councillor Rokhsana Fiaz announced her intention to challenge for mayor. She reinstated this after the results of the second vote on Monday.

She said: “Two weeks ago, I announced I would stand to become Labour candidate’s for Mayor of Newham in an open selection.

“Labour members have unanimously voted for choice, so in the coming weeks I will be setting out my vision for Newham on housing, jobs, education and health; and where residents are at the heart of everything we do.

“I’ll be starting that now by listening to members and residents about how we can build Newham’s future together so everyone has the opportunity to succeed and thrive.”

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

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