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Final furlong in Labour's race for mayor candidate

PUBLISHED: 11:59 02 September 2010

THE scramble for the nomination to be Labour's candidate for the East End's first elected mayor is in top gear with just two days to go as party members are canvassed for support.

THE scramble for the nomination to be Labour’s candidate for the East End’s first-ever elected mayor is in top gear with just two days to go as party members are canvassed for support.

The Tower Hamlets party faithful cast their preference votes one-to-seven on Saturday.

Council leader Helal Abbas held his meet-the-community meeting at Whitechapel’s Micro Business centre on Tuesday.

But hot on his heels was former council leader Michael Keith in the same centre just three hours later.

Both Keith and Abbas assured the Bengali community that they would fight the Coalition Government to protect public services if elected Mayor on October 21, the day after the expected £70m cuts are announced.

They face stiff competition for the nomination from controversial former leader Lutfur Rahman, who held his conference in Brick Lane on Monday, when he refused to be drawn on how much out-of-court settlement he got in his legal battle with Labour regional HQ which twice tried to keep him off the shortlist.

Another former council leader in the race is London Assembly budget chairman John Biggs, along with two more Tower Hamlets cabinet members, Siraj Islam and Shira Khatun. The seventh runner is health expert Rosna Mortuza.

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