Labour figures unite in condemnation of deputy leader Tom Watson’s conduct toward party’s general secretary – but some go further and call for resignation
Deputy Labour leader Tom Watson has provoked a flood of appalled outrage from Labour MPs, officials and supporters by his persistent attacks on the partys general secretary, Jennie Formby – who is working hard for the party in spite of a battle against cancer.
Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell and other front-benchers have condemned Watson’s behaviour, including public demands he knows are impossible, as bullying and worse:
Formby herself responded to Watson in a withering letter.
But two elected members of Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) have now gone further than condemnation – calling on Watson to resign. First, Claudia Webbe:
Welsh grassroots representative Darren Williams then backed her call:
The NEC is the party’s ruling body and both Webbe and Williams were elected to it by Labour’s grassroots. Their call carries considerable weight in view of Watson’s refusal so far to go back to members to refresh his mandate after widespread dissatisfaction with his performance.
Watson has also been accused by party insiders of breaching the Equality Act in his treatment of Formby. Cancer sufferers automatically qualify as disabled under the Act.
Tom Watson has not responded to requests for comment on the Formby situation.
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