“Watson oversee complaints? Last time he intervened he was in trouble with Parliament and police!”

Labour’s current deputy leader, Tom Watson, has briefed media that he intends to personally oversee Labour’s disciplinary process – and even that he will be running his own parallel process.

He has shown the email below to journalists friendly to his cause:

From: WATSON, Tom
Sent: 25 February 2019 13:00
To: WATSON, Tom tom.watson.mp@parliament.uk
Cc: Jennie Formby
Subject: Antisemitism, racism and bullying of colleagues

To all Labour MPs and Peers

Dear colleague

Re: Antisemitism, racism and bullying of colleagues

Over recent weeks a number of colleagues have shared their frustration that incidents of antisemitic, racist abuse and bullying have not been dealt with in an adequate and timely manner or that colleagues have not been informed of the outcome of party investigations.

In response to these concerns, I requested that the General Secretary improve procedures by appointing a named member of staff that could be a point of contact for colleagues to raise cases and be updated on progress.

Jennie Formby was very clear that she sees it as her responsibility to be your point of contact.

So if you have any concerns about abuse or threats from fellow Labour Party members, or would like information about the progress of your complaint, please raise these issues directly with the General Secretary at jennie_formby@labour.org.uk

As your Deputy Leader I am deeply alarmed at the amount of abuse that colleagues are receiving from within the party.

In order to properly assess and monitor the scale of the problem, I would like to see any issue or complaint you raise with the General Secretary.

From now on my team will be logging and monitoring all complaints. I will ensure that this information is shared with both Jeremy, the Shadow Cabinet and colleagues on the National Executive Committee.

Please forward any emails or letters you send to Jennie Formby to me at [redacted]@gmail.com

Best wishes

Tom

(emphases added by the SKWAWKBOX)


This suggestion has met with derision from many Labour MPs – and not only because Watson has no authority over the complaints process and is therefore asking Labour MPs to breach data laws by sharing private information about people who have not yet been found guilty of anything with a party (him) who has no business possessing it.

MPs have pointed out that Watson has form – disastrous form – for this kind of vigilantism. In 2015, he was forced to apologise before a committee of MPs for rash comments about late Tory grandee Leon Brittan:

BBC headline from October 2015

If [Watson] had waited until a formal meeting with other people I was working with, it would have been put in perspective. Things were mixed up… [what Watson said at PMQs] wasn’t a true reflection of what I was trying to get across

Whistleblower Peter McKelvie


Watson also attempted an intervention during a 2012 Prime Minister’s Questions session in which he made accusations under parliamentary privilege – but was then rebuked by his own whistleblower for misunderstanding the evidence, blundering ahead without checking his information and going too far in his comments:

The Telegraph’s October 2015 headline about Watson’s blunder

MPs told the SKWAWKBOX that the more recent history of illegal accessing of Labour members’ data and Watson’s previous track record made it unthinkable that he should have any involvement at all in Labour’s disciplinary process. One MP said:

Given the scandal last week with TIG MPs breaching data laws when they quit, does Tom really want to go there?

He’s not even using a Labour email address so there’d be no trackability or accountability for where the data goes. Given what happened with Willsman recently – let alone what Tom did a few years ago – who’d trust him with that?

Another said:

Watson oversee complaints? Last time he tried intervening in investigations he was in trouble with Parliament and the police and made a complete hash of it!

He wants everyone to think he runs the show, why doesn’t he go the whole hog and run for the leadership if he thinks he can be trusted?

Thank f*** he isn’t in charge of anything except his own PR – and that’s bad enough.

MPs have also challenged Watson to trigger a leadership contest with Jeremy Corbyn if he thinks he should be leading the party – with some Corbyn supporters even going so far as to offer Watson their nominations to ensure he could get onto the ballot.

Tom Watson was contacted for comment. He did not reply.

SKWAWKBOX comment:

Labour’s rules do not permit Jeremy Corbyn to decide guilt or innocence in cases of complaint, nor do they entitle Tom Watson to access details. Watson’s track record – and his willingness to misrepresent the situation – shows the absolute wisdom of those policies.

The mere fact that he has asked MPs to send personal data about Labour members – assuming they are Labour members, which recent history shows is often not the case – without their permission and when they have not been found guilty of anything demonstrates that Tom Watson is an unfit person to have the kind of access and information he is demanding.

Fortunately, it seems many Labour MPs recognise the complete inappropriateness of his latest grandstanding – and that the party will not hesitate to involve the relevant authorities if Watson and other MPs ignore the obvious application of data law to the complaints process.

The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal or here for a monthly donation via GoCardless. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.

If you wish to reblog this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.

40 responses to ““Watson oversee complaints? Last time he intervened he was in trouble with Parliament and police!”

  1. It looks like Tom Watson is trying to undermine and sabotage the disciplinary procedures of the Labour Party. Lawyers for the accused would have a field-day with this nonsense.

    • Trust me on this SteveH, but Watson doesn’t need to do anything to undermine or sabotage the disciplinary procedures. The party are doing this anyway.

      Jane Shaw in the compliance unit co-ordinates the process with party officers to ensure members are expelled. The entire process is one sided and twisted to get the outcome the party want. It’s corrupt.

      And yes, I believe I can evidence this even with a partial and redacted Subject Access Request. But I’m only an average ex member, so nobody wants to know.

      • Nemtona, I absolutely believe you. There is still a Zionist core in the Labour Party who are determined to expell anyone who objects to their influence. Jews who object to Zionism are particularly at risk as is Jeremy Corbyn for his criticisms of Israel. If you don’t mind me asking, why are you an ex member?

      • Jack T I was falsely accused of AS by my CLP (Weaver Vale) because I stood up to a bully.

        The Compliance Unit would not give me my SAR until instructed to by the Information Commissioner. It was redacted and incomplete. Neither did the CU tell me I had to request a SAR from the CLP. They refused to postpone my hearing while I collected all the data so I refused to attend on the basis I did not know all the information and allegations against me. (Silly me, I thought that was reasonable). The panel found against me.

        My CLP SAR (also redacted and incomplete) showed the evidence to be ludicrous. The CLP then changed the charge to the catch all of bringing the party into disrepute.

        The emails and correspondence I have show collusion with the CLP secretary, the CU and the West Midlands RO. I believe this is why the party will not let me see all the information, I am entitled to under the GDPR act.

        Currently I have a judgement from the ICO against the party for contravention of the GDPR act, for not providing me with the data or informing me of the data they have. They may take action, but this has not been confirmed.

        The ICO have instructed the CLP secretary to provide me with a full, unredacted SAR. He has not done this so I am waiting for a further judgement from the ICO about the conduct of the CLP secretary. He has also used my data without my knowledge and circulated defamatory and false data to members of the CLP executive (33 members) – also in breach of GDPR.

        My solicitor has written to the party, but clearly the national party or CLP secretaries cannot be trusted with members (and ex members) details.

        NB for clarification. The party has structured the responsibility for safe keeping of members information in two parts. The national party is the data controller for national and regional data. CLP secretaries or nominated data control officers are responsible for CLP and branch data. So when you submit a SAR the national party only give half the story. This is something they like to keep secret.

      • I will suspend judgment – for now. What is certain is that the mechanisms that expelled Marc Wadsworth whilst turning a blind eye to Margaret Hodge in the definition of ‘Bringing the Party into disrepute’ certainly need to change.

        In the meantime, the case of Jackie Walker, with the hearing due in a month’s time, needs watching. Her case is a litmus test of the procedures (already flawed by the time that it has taken to get to this stage).

        Meanwhile, it also demonstrates the bias of reporting that exists. You will hear repeatedly of the foul abuse aimed at Luciana Berger. Fair enough – there are foul-mouthed nut jobs around on social media.

        But you *won’t* hear about the parallel antsemitic attacks on Jackie Walker from putative pro-Israel sources (yes, unlike the Israel lobby’ I’d want more evidence to be sure where allegations come from).

        Here’ a sample rant :

        “We should send people like you to the fucking gas chambers. Palestine does not exist, nor did it ever exist. Israel has been a jewish homeland for 3000 years! Moron.”

        Now … where did the MSM examine this?

        Actually it was reported as McDonnell supporting a racist.

        More detail can be found at :

        https://www.jewishvoiceforlabour.org.uk/blog/jackie-walker-abused-and-vilified/

        Thus the importance of the case in assessing the validity and independence of procedures now.

        Apart from that, I’d renew the call for transparency in procedures. It’s the only way in which decisions can be validated.

      • “The CLP then changed the charge to the catch all of bringing the party into disrepute.”

        I think, Nemtona, that you have put your finger on the key way in which natural justice is denied when allegations fall.

        A dry laugh emerges when you consider the characters who constantly bring ‘the Party into disrepute’ with no such judgment.

        Jenny Formby needs a big broom for the stables.

      • Nemtona, were you expelled before or after Janny Formby & co took over from the previous gen sec?

      • Nemtona, Thanks for that. Even without going into the rights and wrongs of your case, judging by your account of the process, it is abundantly clear that your ability to defend yourself has been deliberately and purposely compromised by the Party and your CLP. This should raise alarm bells with those in the executive who have any concern at all for democracy and transparency in the Party.

        I have my suspicions that many if not all CLPs are operating on orders and guidelines issued to them by Iain McNicol who tried to prevent Jeremy Corbyn from becoming Leader. In any case, any such instructions should be open for us all to see.

        From the events of the past, as mentioned by RH below, members can have zero confidence in the ability of the LP to be open and fair when dealing with accusations of wrong doing by members.

        I hope you are successful in taking your case further and that if you succeed, the officials who have conspired to penalise you are expelled from the Party.

  2. He knows he will be refused and thinks he can then claim Labour’s action on AS and bullying is being covered up or at least none effective

  3. He’s just openly said break the law tell me everything & to Hell with things like data confidentiality, registered processors & so on.

    Surely The GS has got to smack him down from on high now he’s going too far.

    I’d like to ask him why he disappeared from view for months at a time then pops up with a nicely timed pos like this he’s been MIA for at least 60% of his “leadership” period

    If I were in the PLP I’d be appalled at the thought of that grubby little gremlin going thru any data in relation to me.

  4. Tom Watson, one of the Labour Friends of Israel who bullied Marc Wadsworth out of the Labour party for saying that an MP was too close to a right-wing newspaper is now campaigning against bullying.
    Who said irony was dead?
    Can’t a Labour MP challenge him for the deputy leadership?

    • Watson is well past his sell date in fact he should have been binned long ago. We have an outstanding member of the PLP who would slot into deputy leadership perfectly if we could persuade him to challenge Watson, it is Chris Williamson.

      Some say it is time for a woman deputy leader and I can see the logic in that but in my opinion there is no one else in the Party who could do a better job than Chris Williamson.

      • Quota System or the best person for the job? It wasn’t so long ago that many women voted for Margaret Thatcher simply because she was a woman, in the name of gender solidarity. Whatever happened to equal opportunities for every individual, regardless of gender; race; sexuality or disability? Elites decide the criteria, but always the elites benefit. The class war is over?

        May I suggest Mary Creagh; Stella Creasy; Angela Eagle; Ruth Smeeth; Liz Kendall or perhaps Jess Phillips to fulfil your criteria of assessing the qualities of a potential deputy leader; by not WHO they are but WHAT! All discrimination is negative & penalises the innocent.

  5. This isn’t just any old grandstanding – this is M & AS grandstanding.

    Inside every dieting man there’s a fat man trying to get out.

  6. That “Please forward any emails or letters you send to Jennie Formby to me at [redacted]@gmail.com” is definitely a joke, isn’t it? Using your own private unsafe gmail account to run the Party business, with potentially highly sensitive private information?

    • And that would constitute a breach of GDPR, and could be costly. If caught he should pay fines out of his own pockets not party funds. And I do not think that Jenny will allow this to happen. He needs to be taught the facts of life – in a political sense.

  7. Why isn’t Watson being disciplined for “bringing the party into disrepute?” That was the charge they used to chuck Marc Wadsworth out and his major crime was being loyal to Jeremy Corbyn.

  8. What is Tom Watson on? Is he ill? His actions are beyond the pale. He is a shocking, duplicitous snake in the grass.

    He must face a challenge from a suitable challenger. He cannot go on acting as though the Labour Party belongs to him.

    He appears to have delusions of grandeur. He is a bully and not to be trusted. He needs to go.

  9. Back to reality….. in a manner of speaking. I just checked the wikipedia list of poll results about an hour ago, and there’s a new one that’s been added in the past twelve hours or so….. a yougov poll that puts the Tories ELEVEN points ahead (but bear in mind of course that all the yougov polls are fake).

    But there’s a couple of things I can’t figure out – ie in the column regarding when it was conducted it says ’19-XX’, and in the column regarding the sample size it says TBA, and if you click on ‘yougov’, it takes you to a page that doesn’t appear to have any connection to the…. er, result of the poll.

    I sense a snap-election coming on!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opinion_polling_for_the_next_United_Kingdom_general_election

    • Just for the record, I just checked the wikipedia list of poll results again, and the missing details have now been added (very odd that they didn’t wait until they had ALL the details before adding it to the list). So the poll was conducted on the 22-23 February for The Times (should have guessed!), at exactly the same time as the poll below it conducted by Deltapoll, which had the Tories SEVEN points ahead, which says it ALL really. But not only THAT, the Deltapoll has Labour at 36%, and the yougov poll has Labour at 30%.

      Bearing in mind that we can’t trust the polling organisations in general – and especially yougov – it of course seems unlikely that the ‘departure’ of the saboteurs will not have had an adverse effect on Labour’s standing (as it was designed to do of course!), but what that amounts to – and certainly in respect of their claims regarding anti-semitism – is leaving the party on the basis of a massive falsehood. The way the Times and BoD – as related on JVLs website – covered the Jackie Walker/John McDonnell story regarding the amount of vile abuse she has received, tells you all you need to know about how totally corrupt they all are.

      And I have little doubt that it is the SAME forces at work who are responsible for the majority of such comments that Jewish Labour – and ex-Labour – MPs receive (AND Diane Abbot).

  10. Owing to my lack of confidence in Tom Watson as Deputy Leader of the Labour Party I hereby give notice that I am now setting up my own Deputy Leadership. I shall of course be personally overseeing the role and assuming of all the duties of the Deputy Leader with immediate effect.

    No doubt colleagues will have no objection at all to me simply circumventing the legitimate Party structure in this way. Nor will they wish to question why I should deem it necessary to act without consulting them.

    Under my new Deputy Leadership Tom will however be their first port of call as the Deputy Leader but members should nevertheless copy me in to all correspondence and business that they might raise with him.

    Those of you who do object to this new initiative can expect to be bullied quite remorselessly.

    • Dear Albert
      I’d like to report that Tom Watson has been falsely claiming to be in charge of complaints oversight, says he’s Deputy Leader and is using a non encrypted email to conduct party business.
      Also he’s the acting liaison/PR officer for the parachute group.
      I trust this will be dealt with asap.
      Yours etc.

  11. As your Deputy Leader I am deeply alarmed at the amount of abuse that colleagues are receiving from within the party. hmmm tom its you and your creed that causes this

  12. I wonder if the NEC has the powers to suspend his attendance at meetings until he complies with the law and gives an assurance of restraint in operate a parallel disciplinary structure from the the one overseen by the NEC. It is clearly inappropriate that he should serve on a committee with oversight of discipline whilst freelancing on the function himself.

  13. Why doesn’t he go for Leader of the Independent Group?
    I think most members have zero confidence in this Invisible Man.
    When was this Deputy last on a picket line or stood with the rank and file confronting the Far Right against racism and AS?
    Where have been his actions as an example to others (like Jeremy) some suggest he has plenty of gob but when was the last time he actually promoted Labour and Labour policy?
    Need a new deputy in my opinion.
    I would stand against the snake but you have to be an MP.

  14. I wonder if the real reason he wants control is so he can change the economic policies of the party from the 2017 manifesto to something much more pro-corporate.

  15. I think its time for a grassroots campaign to get rid of Mr Watson he’s repeatedly shown his loyalties lie elsewhere

  16. The sheer arrogance of the imbecile, thinking to appoint himself judge, jury and executioner.

    Oh, how I wish I had the email address; I’d give him so much ‘abuse’ his head would disappear so far up his arse he’d be coming out the other side…

    Boils my p1$$, so he does. To paraphrase Henry II ‘Will no-one rid us of this terminally idiotic gobshite?’

  17. TW seems determined to bring the Party into disrepute constantly attacking the leader and membership acting Without authority to instruct members to contact him in an Unsafe, Illegitimate manner, flouting data protection rules – in matters for which Jenny Formby Is Formally Entrusted. If he wants to take control of the Party he should do so in an open leadership challenge by democratic election – not to do so is to admit he has No Integrity or Credibility.

  18. Any MP’s ruled by their egos are a liability. Hes not fit for office.
    I don’t think his fragility allows him to cope with any criticism along with quite a few others

  19. This has to be viewed in the context of the saboteurs program of disinformation. So FIRST – in this particular episode – they make various complaints and criticisms of Jennie Formby – the General Secretary of the NEC – as they did recently at two succesive PLPs, and then Watson, you see, being the principled member that he is, insists that he play a central roll in the disciplinary process because, well, you know, it obviously isn’t working as it should.

    They must spend at least half their time planning and contriving their strategies, and their platitudes to convey their machinations to the media.

  20. If Labour are serious about winning the next election they have to get rid of him as soon as they can. Get someone who can stand up for Corbyn and Labour. Essential.

Leave a Reply