CLPs facing 12 allegations of antisemitism

Labour have confirmed they have suspended West Ham and East Ham constituency parties


Two local Labour parties that have been suspended amid allegations of corruption and electoral fraud have also been the subject of at least 12 complaints of antisemitism, the JC can reveal.

Labour confirmed last Friday that East Ham and West Ham constituency Labour parties (CLPs) had been suspended after complaints of irregularities in membership recruitment.

But the party is now also investigating at least a dozen further complaints of antisemitism involving six members of the two Newham Labour CLPs  - including officials elected onto its executive committee.

It is understood that at one local General Committee meeting in 2019, a guest speaker was loudly applauded after he had attacked what he described as the “false” allegations of antisemitism being made against the party under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.

While many supported the speaker’s remarks, others stood up and left the meeting or voiced objections.

Among those to raise concerns about the downplaying of antisemitism allegations was a black member of the local party, who was then allegedly subjected to racist abuse.

When one individual was suspended by the party over  claims involving antisemitism, senior figures in the two CLPs expressed support for them.

Sources told the JC that while the two CLPs had been suspended largely as a result of the corruption allegations the antisemitism complaints were “a symptom of the bigger problem.”

Follow-up complaints have been made against West Ham and East Ham CLPs members who have openly expressed their support for the ex-MP Chris Williamson and the editor of The Canary website Kerry-Ann Mendoza.

West Ham CLP members also passed a motion which was critical of Sir Keir Starmer's leadership earlier this year. 

An email from London Labour sent last Friday stated: “The party has recently been in receipt of a significant number of serious allegations regarding the conduct of Labour Party members and membership recruitment practices in Newham.

"The allegations are wide ranging and supported by a considerable amount of evidence.

"Furthermore, we also understand that allegations of electoral fraud are being separately investigated by the Metropolitan Police.

"Due to the seriousness of the allegations, the NEC has agreed to suspend both East Ham and West Ham CLPs with immediate effect."

A Met Police spokesperson  later said while the service received an allegation of electoral malpractice in Newham in August, its assessment concluded a police investigation was not required.

During the suspensions neither of the CLPs can hold meetings or engage in party business. 

Last November, the JC told how a leaked report into Newham Labour confirmed that Jewish councillor Joshua Garfield was left with “medical symptoms of stress, anxiety, panic attacks and depression” due to a “culture of political and institutional antisemitism”.

An investigation into the circumstances behind Mr Garfield’s exclusion from the Newham Labour Facebook Group after he complained about examples of “antisemitic discourse” posted by members concluded that the 24-year-old had been “punished” for raising the issue.

Damningly, the report said Mr Garfield - who “held values, practices  and politics consistent with the democratic socialist and anti-racist traditions of Labour” - was left “damaged by the antisemitism he experienced” which left him  “isolated politically and socially.”

Asked to comment on the 12 allegations of antisemitism against the two CLPs a Labour spokesperson told the JC:  "Labour takes all complaints extremely seriously, and they are fully investigated in line with our rules and procedures and any appropriate action is taken."





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