The contest to be the next Labour Group leader on Wirral Council and fill the blank void of nothingness soon to be left by current Wirral Council ‘leader’ Cllr Phil ‘Power Boy Pip’ Davies is proving to be such a fast moving story that our tip off that Cllr Paul Stuart was in line for the top job has already passed its sell by date. Sources tell us :
The genesis of all this rift was a bitter CLP meeting on 24th June 2016, when Cllr Bernie Mooney (now Joint Deputy Leader of Wirral Council Labour Group ) was voted out of her position as secretary of Wallasey CLP and replaced by lefty Kathy Miller. Paul Davies was voted in as co-vice Chair ( Cllr Paul Stuart was the other co-Vice Chair.)
The CLP voted to back Corbyn in his leadership bid. Eagle got wind of this and was presumably an ‘Angry Bird’! She hadn’t yet said she was going to run for leader… and didn’t until early July.
Meanwhile the CLP was suspended by the Labour NEC at their London HQ and remains suspended to this day. Indeed the CLP only realised they’d been suspended when they read it in the Liverpool Echo!
This suspension was done on the ‘strength’ of bogus allegations that were lodged with the press (not the police, where they should have gone – but that presumably would have risked counter charges of wasting police time) saying that some members at the above meeting had engaged in bullying of others, intimidation and ‘homophobic acts’ against Eagle, who was not even present.
Reputedly, it was Cllr Stuart who was the ringleader of 17 people alleging bullying, intimidation and homophobia. Angela Eagle christened them “whistleblowers”, sullying the name of genuine, good faith whistleblowers everywhere, and whatdyaknow? the likes of the Liverpool Echo and The Guardian were there, ever eager to fuel the fire.
Throughout all this nothing was heard from Cllr Adrian Jones, the huge “Corbyn fan”, as his hero was pilloried in order to push Eagle’s leadership chances. And whaddyaknow? Both Jones’s Mr and Mrs and Cllr Stuart can be seen in the photos attached to this tweet, supporting Eagle. This was in the run-up to the 2017 election, 9 months after the CLP suspension and #Brickgate.
Ultimately the allegations went nowhere, but the damage inflicted by the media coverage had been done. We understand one CLP member still has a charge hanging over them, whilst those making bogus allegations have been strangely passed over for any disciplinary action. Is it any wonder the rifts persist and that there are plenty of angry left wingers in Wallasey CLP who feel betrayed? After being expected to tramp the streets in support of Angela Eagle during the general election campaign , some are suspecting that deals will now be done behind their backs rather than the embedded enemy within faced head on and challenged.
To quote from the latter’s email…
Comrades, “Now is the time” to stop acting like a “Party within a party” – and even like a “Momentum within Momentum”.
It is time to grasp that the mainstream (often called the “Left”) has won back the heart and soul of the Labour Party. I do not know of a single member of the Seacombe Branch who has not fully supported my own declarations for Corbyn on the two websites or who does not support him now. So why introduce friction where there need be none? Let’s try now to be a single Labour Party in Seacombe Ward.
Some comrades will remember that we also, for a while, held “Songs of the Labour Movement” musical evenings in the Park View Social Club – an opportunity for comrades to perform – or just listen and rub shoulders informally. But, since then, we have had the difficulty of the Party being suspended so long that many of us don’t even know each other.