Lewisham East chair and Labour First trainer Ian McKenzie has triggered disgust on social media by tweets making vile reference to sex-slavery, the sale of women and beheading – including one referring to Labour’s Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry.
Complaints have flooded into Labour’s HQ and to Newham’s elected mayor Rokhsana Fiaz, for whom McKenzie works as a ‘political adviser’.
The lid appears to have come off, as McKenzie has now been publicly accused of untoward interference with Lewisham East members’ questions at Saturday’s hustings to select a candidate for the by-election triggered by Heidi Alexander’s departure to the London mayor’s office.
Six questions were meant to be selected at random from a box of questions submitted by members and put to the three candidates. But pictures have been posted on social media allegedly showing McKenzie ‘rifling through’ the questions:
McKenzie is also the subject of a still-unresolved complaint from a local member regarding alleged rule-breaches relating to his conduct as secretary of the Labour ‘Local Campaign Forum’ (LCF) during recent local candidate selections:
The complainant goes on to elaborate that s/he believes that McKenzie’s actions led to BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) candidates being excluded from council candidate selections.
Janet Daby’s selection as Labour’s candidate for the by-election was by a substantial margin – she took 68% of the first-round vote – and there is no realistic likelihood that any actions at the hustings would have changed the selection.
However, right-wingers such as the odious Dan Hodges are attempting to paint outrage about McKenzie’s misogynist tweets as anti-democratic behaviour by Corbyn supporters after Saturday’s result.
The fact that there are allegations against McKenzie of anti-democratic behaviour – including at least one complaint predating the selection meeting by almost four months – make a nonsense of such right-wing apologism.
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