Five Labour Councillors Resign From the Party in Middlesborough
I am grateful to the reader who has sent me the link to the story about the ructions in the Labour Party on Middlesbrough Council. Five sitting Labour Councillors have resigned from the party to form a new Independent grouping. The Council is still majority Labour controlled but it seems to have numerous Independent groups of a variety of names. The five will form the “Association of Independent Middlesbrough Councillors” (AIM Group). They will sit alongside 3 Councillors of the “Middlesebrough Independent Councillors Association”, 8 Councillors who are “Independent”, 2 from the Marton Independent Group, and there is also Ray Mallon the Independent directly elected Mayor of Middlesbrough.
The five defectors are Councillors Len Junier (who represents North Ormesby and Brambles Farm ward), Pervaz Khan (Middlehaven), Sajaad Khan (Gresham), Derek Loughborough (North Ormesby and Brambles Farm) and John McPartland (Middlehaven).
– Cllr Junier said in his resignation letter: “I can no longer sit back and watch our fractured group implode through lack of direction, lack of leadership and more importantly lack of Labour values”;
– Cllr Pervaz Khan said he felt “ashamed” for belonging to Middlesbrough Labour Group which “is treating some of my Asian family and friends in a manner which they perceive to be racist and, incidentally, so do I”;
– Cllr Sajaad Khan also criticised the current Labour leadership saying it was “different under Sir Stuart Bell, who would not have stood for all this”;
– Cllr McPartland said he was “not prepared to tolerate any longer” a Middlesbrough Labour Group leadership which he considers to be “morally bankrupt”;
– Cllr Loughborough said though he won his appeal he was unhappy with questions raised at his appeal panel about his involvement with union issues.
This is somewhat similar to the situation in the Harrow Labour Party which saw NINE of their Councillors resign the Labour Whip and ultimately led to Labour’s loss of control of the Council.
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