Lutfur Rahman is an activist in the Jamaat-e-Islami connected Islamic Forum Europe. As council leader, he appointed IFE cronies to jobs for which they were unqualified. After failing to make the initial shortlist – in a process that Labour mishandled – Rahman employed the services of Makbool Javaid, a solicitor with connections to Al Muhajiroun, and managed to crow-bar his way back onto the short list.
As readers of Harry’s Place will know, Rahman has now won the Labour nomination, in a vote of members.
Rahman has been the subject of allegations that he has personally signed up and paid for voters to join the Labour Party. There is strong evidence that he has been doing exactly the same thing in relation to this election. Andrew Gilligan has published a couple of interviews with new Labour party members, and they go like this:
AG: So how did you come to join the party? You all joined on the same day I think? [In fact five of them joined on the same day]
Mr Malique: Same day, yeah.
AG: how did that happen, did someone come round and ask you to join or did you just decide to?
Mr Malique: Yeah, someone came round.
AG: Someone came round? [Mr Malique nods]. Who came round and asked you to join?
Mr Malique: Lutfur Rahman.
AG: Lutfur Rahman, OK, all right, OK. And what happened – did he give you the form, or did he give you the money to pay the subscription?
Mr Malique: Yeah, yeah. He gave me the form.
AG: He gave you the form. And did he give you the money to pay the subscription as well?
Mr Malique: Yes [and nods].
AG: He did. All right, OK. And you all signed the form at the same time as well? You were all in the house and you all signed at the same time? [Mr Malique nods]
AG: So these are your…
Mr Malique: Me and my wife.
AG: And the other four are your family?
Mr Malique: My family. They are living in other house…
AG: Just to re-check, how did you pay your subscriptions, can I ask? Did you pay with your own money, or did Lutfur give you some money?
Mr Malique: [Long pause] I can’t lie to you. My son, my son knows everything.
The IFE is protected within the Labour party, to some extent, by some of the dodgiest of our MPs. However, there are also Labour MPs like Jim Fitzpatrick who have been outspoken in their opposition to the IFE. They cannot allow an IFE coup to enable Mr Rahman control of a budget of a billion.
Labour survived infiltration by Militant. Tower Hamlets Labour Party will survive Jamaat-e-Islami. However, Labour has to act now, and must investigate and if appropriate, expel any persons engaged in breaches of Labour Party rules. If Rahman wins the election, there is good cause to expect that he will continue to act in a scandalous manner. Better to act now, and avoid worse consequences for the Party later.
“eastend” in the comments below says:
“As council leader, he appointed IFE cronies to jobs for which they were unqualified.”
This is a very serious allegation to make. What evidence do you have for it?
I’m glad to oblige:
After Mr Rahman became leader, Tower Hamlets appointed a new assistant chief executive, Lutfur Ali, who – the investigation established – has links to the IFE. In 2006 Mr Ali set up a group called the Centre for Muslim Affairs. The other directors were trustees of the IFE or directors of other organisations closely connected to it.
Mr Ali got the £125,000 job even though council-appointed headhunters described him as “rather limited”, “one-dimensional” and “superficial”. They said he might “struggle with the intellectual challenges [of] a highly strategic role”.
Unknown to the headhunters, Mr Ali was forced to resign from a previous post at the London Fire Authority after breaking rules on political neutrality. He omitted this fact from his Tower Hamlets application.
In turn, Ali handed out grants to a series of IFE linked social organisations.
Lutfur Ali then was forced to resign after Gilligan revealed that he had been moonlighting for other employers.
Want more of this? You’ll get it, unless Labour acts against Rahman, and quickly.