Lambeth Conservative Councillor declines to join residents in calling for Johnson's resignation

With an ongoing body of evidence emerging, shedding light on yet more parties at No 10 during the COVID national lockdowns, Liberal Democrat campaigners Fareed Alderechi and Ben Curtis wrote to Lambeth Tory Councillor Tim Briggs asking him to follow the lead of his colleagues in Scotland and Suffolk, and call for the PM's resignation.

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However, Councillor Briggs declined, saying: "I focus on Clapham Common and Lambeth issues as a local councillor." 

In their letter to Councillor Briggs, Curtis and Alderechi commented: "Just yesterday evening, we spoke to one resident of our ward who manages a care home and voted Conservative in the 2019 General Election. She was furious that whilst those in her care were unable to see their families, and whilst she, like so many, were doing their utmost to protect others, the Prime Minister thought it right to party in the garden of Number 10. We hope you agree that, with everything people have gone through, the Prime Minister should be at least as accountable as any of us.”

This is in contrast to others in the Conservative Party, who already recognise the anger up and down the country. In Lichfield, formerly Conservative now Independent Councillor Cllr Alastair Little wrote to members: ”From breaches of rules in Conservative central office, trips to castles by senior advisors, laughing press officers, extra marital affairs in Government departments and now a garden party at Number 10, the sacrifices the country made have been merely mocked behind the scenes… we are not in a situation where the laws apply to all.”

The response from Councillor Briggs really begs the question: what would the prime minister have to do to lose the support of the Lambeth Tories?  

The Liberal Democrats in Lambeth will continue to stand with everyone in Clapham Common & Abbeville who has struggled during this pandemic; and to fight to uphold those standards we all expect from those trusted with public office.

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Borough AGM 2021

The Lambeth Borough Party AGM is to be held Sunday November 28, at 6PM, via Zoom. If you are a member and wish to attend, please RSVP via the AGM link below. If you wish to stand for office, please make contact via email.

All members should have received a letter or email with further details.

 

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Sir David Amess

Sometime something happens so shocking that the country stands still. The murder of Sir David last Friday, the MP for Southend West is one of those moments. Our condolences from Lambeth to his family, friends, colleagues, staff and constituents, which have been echoed by the wider party and indeed, all of our parliaments.

Threats of violence and incitement have become an all too common occurrence in Britain this last few years, notably with Jo Cox MP's murder in 2016. It is not clear what can be done to reverse this, there is no one solution we can adopt. But we can and must hope for better all the same.

 

Lambeth Liberal Democrats

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Nothing Has Changed: Cressida Dick Must Resign

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Last week the police officer who kidnapped Sarah Everard from the streets of Lambeth then raped and killed her was sentenced to a whole life tariff. As the facts of the crime have been made public, it has become increasingly clear that the Met Police under the inadequate leadership of Commissioner Cressida Dick continues to fail the citizens of Lambeth and London.

Nothing has changed. There has been no progress. We repeat our demand from 13 March, the night of the Clapham Common vigil:

Cressida Dick must resign.   

She did not resign in March, she has not resigned now. This must not stand. If she does not resign, she must be dismissed. If no one is to take responsibility, then we can expect no real change. 

It has become painfully clear that Sarah’s ordeal was more horrific than we had already thought possible.  This raises further questions about how the Met Police responded to the peaceful vigil on Clapham Common in Sarah’s memory and their failure to screen an obviously dangerous policeman. They have had six months to respond with a plan to deal with misogyny in its ranks and how to make our city safer for women and girls. We find out this week that they have done nothing. 

Worse we see Conservative and Labour politicians lining up to support Dick to cover for their own failures. 

We also call for:

  • Mayor Khan to act immediately and decisively to have Cressida Dick removed as Commissioner. 
  • The Policing Minister, Kit Malthouse, and Home Secretary, Priti Patel to take responsibility for overseeing a failing police force and take action or resign from their posts.
  • Urgent reform of the Met; we support Ed Davey’s call for a Royal Commission on the Met’s conduct and London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon’s call for “a comprehensive review of recruitment, vetting, conduct and culture with measurable actions”.
  • A massive effort in cross-party working at all levels of government - from local to national - to end violence against women and girls, including legislation to make public sexual harassment a crime and the UK to ratify the Istanbul Convention. 

Our thoughts and sympathies remain with Sarah’s family and friends at this traumatic time.

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New Wards for Lambeth

The Lambeth Liberal Democrats welcome the Commission's final recommendations for the Borough's new electoral map as a significant move forward to providing better representation for Lambeth's many communities. The new 2 member wards in many parts of the borough will provide residents with representation based on smaller, natural neighborhoods. The old one size fits all large wards were not fit for purpose and we are pleased the Commission and many residents agree. This is only a first step to enhance local democracy, local electoral reform is still the best solution to fixing a system where half the voters chose 95% of the councillors in Lambeth.

We are especially pleased to see the Commission has decided to revert back to the original proposal for a new Clapham Common-Abbeville ward, including the residents of Oaklands Estate. It was disappointing that the local Labour Party spent so much effort trying to break this community up and we are pleased that so many local residents of the estate decided to support our proposal. The Telford Park community were also very firm about not being split up, which we put to the Commission during the consultation process and the new Streatham Hill West & Thornton is what residents want. There is no substitute for knocking on doors and seeing what people think.

Matthew Bryant, local campaigner for Streatham Hill and Thornton had this to say:

“I am pleased that the Commission rejected Lambeth Council’s ludicrous proposal to split up the Telford Park area.  Wards need to reflect local communities, which the Commission has largely achieved.”

To learn more about the new boundaries, here is the LGBCE report for Lambeth.

Next Steps for Local Democracy

In Scotland and Wales, thanks to the efforts of local Liberal Democrat campaigners and elected representatives STV is now an option for local council elections. This means that local councils better reflect the voter intention. The party with the most votes will still get the most councillors, but they will not have the system rigged in their favour to get the vast majority of councillors, despite not getting the vast majority of voters, like here in Lambeth and across England.

 

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