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Labour selection shock for first elected Mayor of Tower Hamlets

PUBLISHED: 10:08 25 June 2010 | UPDATED: 16:12 05 October 2010

LABOUR has dropped a bombshell with its shortlist three candidates for the first elected mayor of Tower Hamlets in London’s East End. Both the Leader of Tower Hamlets council and his controversial predecessor have been dropped

By Mike Brooke

LABOUR has dropped a bombshell with its shortlist of three candidates for the first elected mayor of Tower Hamlets in London’s East End, announced this morning.

Both the Leader of Tower Hamlets council and his controversial predecessor have been dropped.

Helal Abbas, who took over at the Town Hall on May 26, failed to make last night’s selection.

Also excluded is Lutfur Rahman who headed the local authority when it was linked to alleged influences by the Islamic Forum Europe in the Channel 4 Dispatches investigation earlier this year. He failed to make the selection last night (Thurs) after having stepped down when he announced he was putting his name forward for the Labour ticket.

Party officials met at constituency HQ in Bethnal Green to thrash out the final list of hopefuls to bring it down to just three names in the ring.

They include the London Assembly’s high-profile budget chairman John Biggs, a former Tower Hamlets councillor who now represents East London at City Hall.

The other two are both current Tower Hamlets councillors from the East End’s large Bengali community, Sirajul Islam, representing Bethnal Green South ward at the Town Hall, and Shiria Khatun, elected for Poplar’s East India & Lansbury ward on the authority.

The final selection will be by secret ballot of members of Tower Hamlets Labour Party on July 17.


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