Defection roundup

Posted by David Boothroyd
View David's blog
16 years ago / May 20, 2008

There’s been quite a game of musical chairs in councils across the country after the local elections. Starting first in London, councillors Robert Dunwell and Atiq Malik who both represent Queensbury ward on Brent borough council have both left the Conservatives to form the ‘Democratic Conservative’ group. Meanwhile Vijay Shah, councillor for Wembley Central ward, has left the Liberal Democrats to sit as an Independent. In Tower Hamlets borough council, Rajib Ahmed (East India and Lansbury ward) has left the Liberal Democrats and joined the Labour group.

In Slough borough council, where Labour recaptured majority control on 1 May, there was a leadership challenge from Pervez Choudhry (Central ward) which was declared to have failed. Choudhry and allies Mohammed Rasib and Sukhjit Dhaliwal then announced they would join the Conservatives (which would have the effect of depriving Labour of a majority), but Rasib and Dhaliwal were talked out of it leaving only Choudhry having switched and Labour retaining majority control. Reports indicate that the annual meeting of the council was among the more “interesting” proceedings in a local authority.

Just down the road in Reading borough council, Labour councillor Tony Jones (Battle ward) announced immediately after the election that he was leaving the Labour group to sit as an Independent.

Meanwhile in the north west, the Community Action Party’s poor performance in the elections in Wigan borough council has been capped by the defection of one of its remaining councillors, Bill Wilkes of Bryn ward, who has become an Independent.