Unite suspends Coyne – ‘over data breach’ broken by SKWAWKBOX/Evolve?

The Guardian, Daily Mirror and others have announced this afternoon that Gerard Coyne, Len McCluskey’s main challenger for Unite General Secretary, has been suspended by the union from his position as a regional organiser.

Suspended Unite challenger Gerard Coyne

Unite‘s press office was unable to offer a comment at this time, but the SKWAWKBOX understands from union sources that the suspension may be connected with the alleged data breaches broken by this blog and the excellent Evolve Politics and will last while a formal investigation is carried out.

The SKWAWKBOX is awaiting confirmation from the union of the impact the suspension will have on his candidacy. Although Coyne is considered to have little chance of victory, voting in the contest has now closed so it may be that the contest will be allowed to run to its natural conclusion to prevent right-wingers claiming he was suspended because he stood a chance of winning – like this premature conclusion by Progress‘ Richard Angell:

angell coyne.jpg

However, it’s unlikely that Coyne would be able to take up the role in the event that he wins, until the investigation is completed. Should he be dismissed from his organiser role as a result of the investigation, of course, it is unlikely that he would be qualified to act as General Secretary even if he were to win the ballot.

If the suspension is indeed connected to the Labour data use, then yet again, the SKWAWKBOX has broken information with a high-level national impact. No wonder the right has been trying to undermine us.

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  1. I had wondered how Mr Coyne would manage to come fourth in a three-nag race. Now we know.

  2. Reblogged this on Sid's Blog and commented:
    Huge Pat on back to Skwawkbox

    1. Regional organiser. According to BBC News as well. He’s not as senior as secretary, though lots of the media are calling him that today

  3. Coyne has copped one in the knackers.
    Serves him RIGHT!
    Was he blindsided, running off at the mouth, being guided by those who know no better?
    He thought he was RIGHT now he knows he shoulda gone LEFT! Swimming against the tide, he’s now feeling sorry for himself, being made to nurse his wounds while suspended!
    Not nice is it COYNE, now you’re getting some off what we got, the only difference is, we didn’t do anything, unlike yourself!
    I would think, there will be a few more following you to the SIN BIN!
    How Sweet it is when the those who think there untouchable get there’s!
    I mustn’t GLOAT.

  4. Well, you don’t know why he was suspended but it’s a development socialists should condemn, not praise.

    It’s highly undemocratic – what will be your reaction be if Coyne has won the vote but not allowed that victory if found guilty by an ‘independent’ Unite ‘court’?

    Such views may get an echo amongst Labour party types but revolutionary socialists know that the principled line is to argue against manoeuvres by Right or Left, never mind most members being left with the impression of outright chicanery. You are often just a mirror image of your Right opponents.

    (I voted for Allinson in the election.)

    1. Events have moved on. It’s now known why – and if he’s won but broken the rules and the law, he should be out on his ear before he can blink.

  5. hi i have complained last night 10.40pm and this am now to BBC complaints they appear to be briefed by Coyne’s side of the story and pretending the real reason for suspension is a mystery I have given your website as the source


    David Smith Anderley Lodge 216 Stow Hill Newport NP20 4HA Wales, UK 01633 266781 07923899441


  6. Hear he, and his mates, are saying they’ve been “stitched up?” By whom? The Law? No surely these people are above the law? Mr Coyne and those who gave him permission to use the data are ALL guilty of unlawful use of private data. No one “stitched up” Mr Coyne. He did it to himself. If he doesn’t know the law then that is his responsibility.
    My husband & I were caught up in misuse of private data which included unsubstantiated allegations from 25 years ago!!! Let that sink in. When we found out we got some information on how we could tackle this. Armed with information on Data Protection Act we went after those responsible. Immediately all papers with accusations were shredded!!! We didn’t sue but they knew we could have sued them and they’d have to pay us a huge amount. But we did say that if they ever did it again we would take them to court.

    Coyne & mates broke the law and they should get their due comeuppance.

  7. I’ve just heard an interview between a Yorkshire MP (if I remember correctly) and Nick Robinson on the Today programme. She know nothing about the Data Protection Act issue!

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