Thursday, September 15, 2011
London Labour faces massive backlash over shake-up of Glasgow councillors as claims emerge of unfairness and denial of natural justice against Scots
In the movie, Independence Day starring Will Smith, the American President fighting the Alien Invasion gives an impassioned speech to rally the troops.
Here is the speech:
“Good morning. In less than an hour, aircraft from here will join others from around the world. And you will be launching the largest aerial battle in the history of mankind. "Mankind." That word should have new meaning for all of us today. We can't be consumed by our petty differences anymore. We will be united in our common interests. Perhaps it's fate that today is the Fourth of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom... Not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution... but from annihilation. We are fighting for our right to live. To exist. And should we win the day, the Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day the world declared in one voice: "We will not go quietly into the night!" We will not vanish without a fight! We're going to live on! We're going to survive! Today we celebrate our Independence Day!”
Across the road in Glasgow, a similar fight is going on, the culled Labour Councillors of shame have declared loudly in one voice to London Labour.
‘"We will not go quietly into the night!" We will not vanish without a fight! We're going to live on! We're going to survive!’
Labour bosses are facing a growing list of complaints and legal threats from de-selected councillors, the fight back has begun.
Already, the Labour Party has seen concerns raised the legality of the process.
Half of Labour’s 47 councillors have been prevented from standing for re-election next May as the London Labour ‘Deadwood Finder General’ has brought down the axe on them.
So, in the public domain we get stories of possible breaches of party rules, rushed appeals, and councillors’ fates decided before they were even interviewed.
And privately back stabbing by a senior councillor to get rid of his enemies!
The back lash has begun and its fierce, the critical meeting of the city party next week is rumoured to be going to be postponed.
It’s total war.
A key official in the cull is also dragged into the spotlight, procedures secretary Jamie Mallan.
He runs a website pretending to be a dog.
This could be helpful if he is dealing out ‘ruff’ justice.
I have never heard of Jamie Mallan but it is said, he does a cracking line in ‘baby talk’ on his “Brodie the Beagle” Facebook page.
Eyebrows have said to have been raised among Labour activists.
An option for Labour Councillor de-selected is the classic defection to other parties, in the war, other parties have said to approached Labour councillors about defecting.
In the pipeline there is said to be at least a dozen councillors are expected to lodge appeals, many alleging the exercise has been badly mishandled.
Labour last night said the process was “absolutely robust”.
What is odd and highlights the concerns of the de-selected is that under Labour Party rules, sitting councillors are only interviewed ahead of an election if there are concerns about their discipline, attendance, campaigning or competence.
In Glasgow, it seems that all the councillors were interviewed. This means that normal procedure was waived, does that sound like natural justice?
I think not.
The person who did this is the Scottish general secretary Colin Smyth.
Activists claim this was done without the explicit agreement of the city party’s ruling general committee.
If true, it could undermine the whole basis of the vetting exercise and force them to re do the entire vetting exercise again with different people hosting the vetting.
Another source of unhappiness is that some councillors are also challenging Mr Mallan’s status as procedures secretary.
It is alleged at Glasgow East’s annual meeting last month it was not properly convened because not all members were told of it, and so Mr Mallan has no right to be procedures secretary.
A good solid legal point, if this is true.
The complaints are by the truck load on this cull, one councillor is now considering going to court to interdict the meeting.
And bizarrely, two councillors claim their rejections were dated the day before they were interviewed.
Nothing in the public domain who at present that could be.
One disgruntled councillor said:
“This is London Labour running Glasgow Labour.”
The fight for Glasgow continues, there is deadwood in Glasgow, half of the sitting Labour Councillors have been rejected, if they form a break away group, and join the SNP in coalition, Glasgow could see a real change before the election.
But will the culled Labour Councillors of shame have the nerve to pull the trigger if their appeals fail?
Luckily Euan McLeod and Andy Muir have a movie career to fall back on, Glasgow’s very own John Travoltas, maybe leaving the city chambers but they will forever be tap dancing into our hearts.
It is time for Labour Councillors to start thinking of declaring their ‘independence’ day from London Labour, they will need more than Dad's Army tactics to win.
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University