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Left Socialist Blog

Lutfur Rahman Forced Out by Racism, Says Socialist Worker as Former Mayor Hand-Picks Successor.

with 31 comments

Meanwhile Lutfur is Busy Picking Heir to the Throne. 

Tower Hamlets mayor Lutfur Rahman forced out by a campaign of racism by Annette Macki.

Socialist Worker

The long Islamophobic witch hunt against Lutfur Rahman continued last week with his removal as mayor of Tower Hamlets in east London.

Election commissioner Richard Mawrey said Rahman had breached election rules and declared his re-election last year as void.

Rahman, who won with a 3,000 majority, has been banned from standing again. He has also been ordered to pay £250,000 in costs.

It continues,

The judgement perpetuates the racist myth of Muslims as passive zombies manipulated by their leaders. It says, “A distinction must be made between a sophisticated, highly educated and politically literate community and a community which is traditional, respectful of authority and, possibly, not fully integrated with the other communities living in the same area.”

It upholds the claim that Rahman used “spiritual influence”.  Mawrey cites a letter signed by 101 imams stating it was a “religious duty” to vote. But there was no outcry in March when a letter from Catholic bishops was read out at masses across England and Wales urging people to “think carefully” about who to vote for in the general election.

The judgement criticises Rahman for referring “to the Bangladeshi community in Tower Hamlets as if it were a small beleaguered ethnic minority in a sea of hostile racial prejudice”.

The article does not deal with any of the charges in the case.

There is no mention of the list of the offences Lutfur has been convicted of and the details of the manipulation of  ‘spiritual influence’, the screams of ‘Zionist’ ‘Racist’, was a reality in Tower Hamlets. That it very clearly worked for support for one party, Rahman’s Tower Hamlets First!

As far as we are aware the Bishops did not tie their ‘spiritual influence’ to any single party – if they did, shame on them!

If Socialist Worker discovers, through its ace -reporters, that Tower Hamlets First benefited from spiritual backing, that is religious campaigning that channelled the  backing of religious organisations behind Lutfur,  we have no doubt that they will discuss this: as every single mainstream media outlet has done at great, great, length.

Socialists have often suffered from this kind of interference, the case of Italy being one of the most notorious.

It might be worth a mention.

Annette Macki also makes no reference to George Galloway’s former warm endorsement of the same Richard Mawrey who made this “racist” prosecution.

But that was when a judgement went in Galloway’s favour. *


Clearly there will be no need for electoral courts  if Socialist Worker has its way.

Or indeed looking at ‘bourgeois’ and ‘racist’ evidence’.

Organising resistance

A meeting to organise the fightback against the attack on democracy on Tower Hamlets has been called for Thursday of this week.

Speakers were set to include Lutfur Rahman, Salma Yaqoob, Stop the War convenor Lindsey German and Weyman Bennett from Unite Against Fascism.

Last November some 1,000 people came to a meeting in Tower Hamlets after Tory minister Eric Pickles sentin a takeover squad to run the council.

This showed the potential to build resistance to the attacks. The general election will be another opportunity.

TUSC and Left Unity candidate in Bethnal Green and Bow Glyn Robbins will be leafleting in the borough this Saturday.

He said, “On 7 May we have the chance to tell the establishment, ‘We’ll decide who to vote for and who runs our borough’ and vote for a socialist.”

Vote for the SWP and make sure there’s more electoral courts!

They will “decide who to vote for!”


In the meantime in the post-modern political world of Tower Hamlet First and its ‘simulation’ of democracy:

Lutfur to offer Rabina Khan chance of becoming Tower Hamlets First mayoral candidate: scrutiny begins 

Trial by Jeory.

Further to this post last night, I understand from sources close to Lutfur Rahman that Cllr Rabina Khan is to be offeees the chance of being Tower Hamlets First’s candidate for mayor in June’s election.

She may well speak at the Water Lilly rally on Thursday night.

Lutfur’s camp are expecting some fall out from this decision. They know there is anger about the way this decision has been made, ie by Lutfur’s “kitchen cabinet” whose number includes of course Rabina’s husband, Cllr Aminur Khan.

They think it could even precipitate a number of THF councillors to break away from the “party” and speak out about how Lutfur has been conducting affairs. Some think Rabina is easier to control. So watch this space on that one.

Now that Oli Rahman has been overlooked, I suspect he may not feel the acting mayor role for six weeks is worth his job at the DWP. Read last night’s post for details on that.

This means he would have two options. He could quit as deputy mayor and thus acting mayor and thus leave it to someone else to nominate who should act as mayor until June 11. Clearly, Lutfur would like that person to be Rabina to boost her profile.

Or he could nominate a deputy before he resigns and that person could become acting mayor. He may appoint former deputy mayor Cllr Ohid Ahmed to that role.

I think Richard Mawrey QC’s aside that the governance of Tower Hamlets may need further examination will prove prescient.

More on Trial by Jeory site.


* Details of this (from 2007) here: George Galloway – Who Once Endorsed Richard Mawrey QC – Says Lutfur Conviction for Fraud and Illegal Practices “Shameful”.


31 Responses

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  1. Tower Hamlets First has now been removed from the Electoral Commision’s list of registered political parties.

    “Following the Court’s judgment in the Tower Hamlets election petition on 23 April, the Commission has concluded that Tower Hamlets First can no longer remain registered as a political party.”


    John R

    April 29, 2015 at 5:57 pm

  2. hasn’t Red Ed used the comedic influence of Russell Brand to get votes?

    i am curious- why have you made it your no.1 mission in life, your personal crusade, your monomaniacal obsession, to attack Galloway and anything he is associated with at each and every opportunity?


    April 29, 2015 at 6:15 pm

  3. @Mike Simples. Because Galloway makes the left into a laughing stock. Also, principles.

    Paul Canning

    April 29, 2015 at 7:39 pm

  4. … asks the man with a monomaniacal (mike’s new dictionary word of the day?) obsession with the glorious orange Napoleon and the shadowy gay-jewish menace.


    redkorat☭ (@red_korat)

    April 29, 2015 at 9:48 pm

  5. As a member of Unite (and the United Left) I want to know what our “Chief of Staff” Andrew Murray is doing at the pro-Rahman meeting, billed as a Unite representative (fair enough – though politically wrong – if he was billed as speaking in a personal capacity). Unite members must demand an explanation.

    Jim Denham

    April 29, 2015 at 9:59 pm

  6. @canning – depends on what you find funny. Also, what principles?

    Galloway is the supreme statesman of our generation, the greatest orator since Winston Churchill and Enoch Powell. Galloway is a real parliamentarian, an international statesman known and revered by millions across the world. He is also classically stylish, and wears a fashionable fedora hat, which you might well have noticed and probably appreciate.

    Luftur Rahman put tower hamlets on the map, turning the borough around. He also helped to rebuild a synagogue and attended a holocaust memorial event

    He also spoke at a gay pride event. Whats the problem?

    “I grew up with people in the East End from all backgrounds, black, white, gay, and many of them are still my mates.”


    he has gay mates! He hardly sounds like some anti semitic reactionary homophobic islamicist fascist bigot in an unholy alliance with misguided opportunist Trotskyists- both trying to use each other as ‘useful idiots’ – to me. he is what he appears, a social democrat politician.

    it’s good that the UAF are attending this event. Who knows, Rahman may even be reinstated,


    April 29, 2015 at 10:01 pm

  7. “why have you made it your no.1 mission in life, your personal crusade, your monomaniacal obsession, to attack Galloway and anything he is associated with at each and every opportunity?”

    I would imagine that one possible answer would be:

    because it makes it so bloody easy.


    April 29, 2015 at 10:47 pm

  8. Typo: “because HE makes it so bloody easy”.


    April 29, 2015 at 10:54 pm

  9. I note that “Mayor Lutfur Rahman’s Offical Website” is not only still up and running and being updated* and calls on people to “contact the Mayor”, but also claims to be published by one “Cllr” A. Choudhury.

    Is that not some form of electoral offence, pretending to hold an official office when you have been disqualified; and it supposedly being published by someone claiming to hold an office from which they have been disqualified?

    Is the website the personal property of the ex-Mayor, or does it belong to the council? It’s not called “Disgraced Ex-Mayor’s Official Website” and it uses the official branding of Tower Hamlets, so I presume the IT department should get it closed down, shouldn’t they?

    *”The barrage of discriminatory abuse I have received over the last few days on here and elsewhere will be referred to police for hate crime.” The judge saw that complaint coming, didn’t he.


    April 29, 2015 at 11:07 pm

  10. “the greatest orator since Winston Churchill and Enoch Powell” — what the fuck did you pull that out of? Never heard of Michael Foot? Nye Bevan? Tony Benn? Harold Wilson? Gordon Brown? Michael Sheen is better political orator than Napoleon and it’s not even his day job!

    I was listening to Napoleon a few years ago and it occurred to me his vocal cadence sounds exactly like recordings of someone else. Won’t say who, as it may be actionable, but it’s moderately disturbing.

  11. @Mike All that plus cat impressions. It’s like the second coming.

    Paul Canning

    April 30, 2015 at 12:47 am

  12. another thing I like about Galloway is that he doesn’t do a fake mockney accent to make himself sound more working class, unlike members of Trotskyist sects one could mention. Even Red Ed Milli-brand was speaking in mockney recently.

    It takes guts to appear on a TV show like big brother and do a cat impression. I’d like to see you do it.
    millions of Iraqis are dreaming of the good old days under Saddam Hussein. Galloway was right, and we all know it.

    Without Galloway to bash, you AWL wouldn’t have any purpose. you need him and Rahman, becauo se otherwise, your purpose to exist would cease. Why dont you have your own electoral candidates? Why doesn’t Jim Denham run for office against Galloway?


    April 30, 2015 at 1:49 am

  13. few people would have even ever heard of the AWL if it were not for the Weekly Worker.


    April 30, 2015 at 1:52 am

  14. No one here is AWL apart from Denham. Why are you so obsessed with it?

    redkorat☭ (@red_korat)

    April 30, 2015 at 8:25 am

  15. The letter from the Catholic bishops is merely a list of questions people might put to prospective candidates. It expressly avoids recommending any particular party, although reading between the lines some of the questions, on protecting international aid and avoiding the scapegoating of migrants, would seem to rule out a vote for UKIP by the faithful.

    Most Catholics vote Labour and most Anglicans vote Tory but that is a function of class rather than of clerical interference in elections, the former being largely working-class and of immigrant background and the latter white and middle-class.

    Matthew Thompson

    April 30, 2015 at 8:57 am

  16. Exactly.

    And Charlie Hebdo couldn’t have said this better:

    “Galloway is the supreme statesman of our generation, the greatest orator since Winston Churchill and Enoch Powell. Galloway is a real parliamentarian, an international statesman known and revered by millions across the world. He is also classically stylish, and wears a fashionable fedora hat, which you might well have noticed and probably appreciate.”

    He is also a great ballroom dancer.

    Winston Churchill couldn’t dance.

    Proof: “You know, not many people knew it, but the Führer was a terrific dancer. (now shouting with rage) That is because you were taken in by that verdammte Allied propaganda! Such filthy lies! They told lies! But nobody ever said a bad word about Winston Churchill, did they? No! “Win with Winnie!” Churchill! With his cigars, with his brandy. And his ROTTEN painting! Rotten! Hitler, THERE was a painter! He could paint an entire apartment in one afternoon! TWO COATS! Churchill. He couldn’t even say “Nazi”. He would say “Nooooozeeehz, Nooooozeeehz!” It wasn’t NOSES, it was NAZIS! Churchill! Let me tell you THIS! And you’re hearing this straight from the horse – Hitler was better looking than Churchill. He was a better dresser than Churchill. He had more hair! He told funnier jokes! And he could dance the PANTS off of Churchill!

    Read more: http://stageagent.com/monologues/631/the-producers/franz-liebkind#ixzz3Yn5q5xaE

    Andrew Coates

    April 30, 2015 at 12:22 pm

  17. He is also classically stylish, and wears a fashionable fedora hat, which you might well have noticed and probably appreciate.” says mike

    “He is also a great ballroom dancer.” says Andrew

    George was also dashing in fedora in his youth.
    And here are the photos to prove al these statements(with thanks to Private Eye)

    John R

    April 30, 2015 at 1:35 pm

  18. He does look rather fetching in the first photo.

    No wonder he is “revered by millions across the world.”

    He also has ‘gay mates’ (I shall put two !!s – hey why not, add a few more!!!!!), just like Rahman.

    Andrew Coates

    April 30, 2015 at 1:39 pm

  19. “another thing I like about Galloway is that he doesn’t do a fake mockney accent to make himself sound more working class, unlike members of Trotskyist sects one could mention.”

    No, he just talks in an absurd pseudo-Arabic accent that would be panned as racist by the far left if anyone else used it.


    April 30, 2015 at 6:13 pm

  20. Does he wear the fedora to hide a skullcap?-

    Sue R

    April 30, 2015 at 6:49 pm

  21. Don’t know about a pseudo-Arabic accent, but he certainly speaks in a very circumulatory manner. Would be funnier if he spoke like Shteve McLaren.

    redkorat☭ (@red_korat)

    April 30, 2015 at 9:37 pm

  22. I think Galloway has a Scottish accent, not a pseudo-arabic one. Its not hard to tell the difference between a Scotch accent and an Arabic one.

    He uses a high form of English, and has revived the use of some archaic words such as ‘Indefatigable’.

    Rahman has gay mates, he attended a gay pride event. what more do people want? thats enough isn’t it.


    April 30, 2015 at 9:51 pm

  23. @Sue R – all the ladies fall for a man in a fedora.
    also, its Saddam Hussein, not Sodom Hussein.


    April 30, 2015 at 10:04 pm

  24. @ Sue – aye, he dresses like a Hassid.

    @ pipsqueak – the sheer banality of your ignorance is a source of constant … oh i dunno what. Archaic? You mean standard English.

  25. you should watch this: a kind of Australian take on what people like you think about people like Luftur:


    April 30, 2015 at 10:20 pm

  26. Never heard of Michael Foot? Nye Bevan? Tony Benn? Harold Wilson? Gordon Brown?
    Gordon Brown was not a great orator. he was boring and he has made no memorable speeches. None of the list above are really great or comparable to Galloway in terms of oratory. Scargill maybe, he was a good orator.


    April 30, 2015 at 11:12 pm

  27. I like Nazeem Hussain, although his telly show was a bit shite, but then ALL Australian comedy is shite. So what exactly do antiracists and no-borders activists think about Nazeem Hussain or Lutfur Rahman?

  28. Oh, and while we’re on, seeing as you are the great socialist, how about a short explanation (200-300 of your own words) of Marx’s Labour Theory of Value. We’re all agog.

  29. agog? or gog and magog?


    May 1, 2015 at 12:34 am

  30. You *really* don’t think Bevan at least was a good orator, Mike? Really?

    Galloway has no need to sound mockney because his natural accent has a working-class credibility in the English context. The only people who have the need to sound mockney (50 years ago – the Tony Blackburn generation – they sounded mid-Atlantic) are those whose natural accent is pipingly high-pitched RP, like Miliband – or, long ago, Blair – and probably also those whose natural accent is West Country (which, for reasons too complex to go into here, codes as something closer to RP than to the accents of the Old Labour heartlands). Galloway isn’t in that position – this isn’t an England vs Scotland thing because he wouldn’t be in that position if he came from Manchester, Liverpool or Newcastle either.

    Mockneydom is strictly for people who can’t ring the right working-class and/or urban bells, especially in terms of pop culture, with their natural accents – in terms of people who do come from working-class backgrounds, so leaving Damon Albarn out of it, that’s why the singer in EMF sounded mockney but Jarvis Cocker didn’t, because Sheffield is (or was) OK in pop culture but Forest of Dean isn’t. Galloway isn’t in such a position, so he’d never be a mockney whatever his politics, and, as I’ve said elsewhere, he’d almost certainly have been a Yes if he’d stayed in Scotland, and if he was a No because he was worried it would increase anti-Muslim bigotry in England, I think that was a perfectly rational position which was, in part, also mine. But can you really not understand the contextual difference?


    May 3, 2015 at 12:51 am

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