Party’s shameful pursuit of Muslim woman MP and domestic abuse victim reaches threshold for selection contest
Labour’s shameful pursuit of left-wing Poplar and Limehouse MP Apsana Begum has come to fruition this evening. Skwawkbox understands that the party’s campaign to ‘trigger’ Ms Begum, despite the abuse she has and continues to face, her serious ill health and the intervention of a domestic violence specialist has reached the threshold required to trigger a selection contest. Begum is automatically entitled to be on the ballot, assuming the party does not again completely disregard its own rules as it has in the past.
Begum defeated one attempt to remove her in a stitched-up prosecution that was rightly thrown out of court, sending party officials scurrying away disappointed who had been waiting outside the court to announce a contest to replace her. But the party allowed the same allies of her ex-husband, whom she told the court had been abusive toward her, who managed the failed prosecution to run the ‘trigger ballot’ process – and locals have said publicly that the trigger meetings were characterised by abuse, intimidation and threats, especially toward ethnic minority women.
Labour Black Socialists, women Labour members in the neighbouring Bethnal Green and Bow constituency and other groups have condemned Labour’s outrageous, racist and misogynistic treatment of the MP, who has been unsupported throughout by the party and has recently been hospitalised. Affiliated unions, even those leaning right, have voiced their support for her and there have been numerous calls for the trigger process to be halted because of the scale of the abuse and her ill health.
But Labour’s right-wing regime has shamelessly continued its harrying, including smearing her job performance and dismissing the abuse she has faced in the very same comment to the press in which it claimed that it ‘takes all complaints of abuse very seriously’.
Shame on Labour. If Ms Begum can stomach the selection process and wishes to stand for reselection, Labour members in the constituency owe her their support, but fears continue to be raised that the party will ensure the result it so clearly wants. The party has been contacted for comment.
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