On January 24th this year LW broke the news that ex-Mayor of Tower Hamlets and ex-leader of Tower Hamlets First Lutfur Rahman was attempting a political comeback under the guise of the ‘Tower Hamlets Together’ party which had been submitted to the Electoral Commission for registration.
As a direct result of our exclusive Chris Skidmore MP, Minister for the Constitution wrote to Sir John Holmes, Chair of the Electoral Commission on the 3rd of February asking that the application to be submitted to ‘forensic review’ and in due course the Tower Hamlets Together application was rejected on February 23rd.
Job done? No.
Seems Tower Hamlets Together is out there campaigning for Cllr. Ohid Ahmed to be the next Mayor of the borough in 2018 as the four ladies pictured above proudly demonstrated on 25th April, two months after Tower Hamlets Together was consigned to the dustbin of history.
For further proof have a look at this photograph that clearly shows the the Tower Hamlets Together campaign literature that is being distributed across the borough despite the Electoral Commission ban.
The only small concession to the Electoral Commission is that the red house logo has the words ‘Tower Hamlets’ in very small print underneath. Another variation does have ‘Together’ underneath that.
This would seem to be the third version of Lutfur Rahman’s Tower Hamlets First party logo. They really are short of ideas aren’t they?
And just to remind you who all this campaigning is for, it’s Cllr. Ohid Ahmed.
The continued use of the ‘Tower Hamlets Together’ name and logo makes a mockery of the electoral rules and regulations.
Of more concern is the continued blatant disregard for the rule of law and the principles of the democratic process. Without effective sanctions this contempt for the foundations of our society will continue as it has since the judgement of the Election Court.
If challenged the defence of those campaigning for ‘Tower Hamlets Together’ will pretend that they are an ‘independent group’ of candidates with similar values or a ‘People’s Alliance’ with similar values or ‘independent’ local councillors who are, you guessed it, independent.
They are not and never have been independent from one another. The very term has been so routinely abused that it has lost all meaning.
If a genuine bona-fide independent politician, free of any party alliances, should wish to stand for election in Tower Hamlets they would find it impossible to do so.
Independent means Tower Hamlets First / Together which in turn means Lutfur Rahman. There is no difference.
Both Department for Communities and Local Government and Electoral Commission seem to be powerless to stop a group of people, previously judged to have been elected corruptly, to organise and campaign under a banner almost identical to that which they previously used as to carry out the looting of our borough’s scant resources.
Today the candidates for the 2017 General Election will be formally announced and the current campaigning for the 2018 Local and Mayoral Election in the borough may lessen but will certainly not stop. Local government is the real prize.
In the constituencies of Bethnal Green & Bow and Poplar & Limehouse there will be one prospective parliamentary candidate who is a core Tower Hamlets First / Together member and one who is actively backed by Tower Hamlets First / Together.
On paper it would seem that neither of these candidates has a remote chance of becoming a Member of Parliament.
But in Tower Hamlets what should happen and what does happen are two very different things.