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Galloway hands in petition for elected mayor for East End

PUBLISHED: 08:00 23 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:07 05 October 2010

GEORGE Galloway today hands a petition in to his local Town Hall calling for a directly-elected mayor for London's deprived East End. The petition is being given to Tower Hamlets Council's new chief executive deamnding a public referendum

By Julia Gregory

GEORGE Galloway today hands a petition in to his local Town Hall calling for a directly-elected mayor for London’s deprived East End.

The 9,000-name petition is being given by the Respect party leader to Tower Hamlets Council’s new chief executive Kevan Collins, demanding a public referendum.

Only 7,800 signatures are needed for a public referendum on the issue.

The idea for an elected mayor to replace the present council-leader, who is selected each year by ruling party councillors, has won backing from the Bethnal Green & Bow MP and Respect’s Opposition group leader on the local authority.

Directly-elected mayors already run both neighbouring Hackney and Newham.

Galloway is calling for the same strong leadership’ in Tower Hamlets which he says would be directly accountable to the voting public.

The Town Hall, which has been holding consultations to see if the public wants to change the political set up in Britain’s most-deprived borough, is backing an alternative proposal of a leader selected by councillors for the full four-year term.

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