Labour denies ‘purge’ of left as Shaheen left shell-shocked by deselection

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Chingford Faiza Shahen General Election 2024, due to several previous social media remarks, Faiza Shaheen was not chosen to represent Labour in the general election as the Chingford and Woodford Green candidate. This decision was criticised for being a “purge” of one of the party’s most left-wing candidates.

“This isn’t a purge,” shadow minister Darren Jones told the BBC on Thursday, adding that several MPs still in the race identify as left-leaning.

However, Shaheen’s deselection—she had been selected as the opponent of Iain Duncan Smith in 2022—came about hours after Lloyd Russell-Moyle was also ousted on Wednesday by Labour’s national executive committee following a dispute over Diane Abbott’s future. “Whose brilliant idea has it been to have a cull of left-wingers?” Abbott asked on Twitter.

With only a few weeks until the general election, it implies that new candidates will be chosen by Labour’s national executive committee to local parties instead of through the local party or regional office.

Along with choosing Josh Simons and Luke Akehurst, two close associates of Keir Starmer, to run for retirement seats, Labour also nominated Westminster writer Paul Waugh, Camden council leader Georgia Gould, and a former Rachel Reeves adviser as candidates for the general election.

Shaheen claimed in an interview with Newsnight that she had just received an email informing her that her candidature had been blocked and that she was “in a bit of a state of shock” at “being mistreated this.”

Six weeks after her baby was born, Shaheen knocked on doors. I worked hard for that seat.

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Although Shaheen stated she had apologised in a disciplinary hearing this week for liking a tweet that “plays into a trope” about Jews, the party has not revealed which posts the decision was related to. She mentioned that in another piece, she talked about her encounters with Islamophobia.

The Labour Muslim Network called the decision “unacceptable” and stated that it is “utterly outrageous” to cite her tweets detailing her encounters with Islamophobia as justification for her deselection.

The news came after a row and confusion over whether Diane Abbott would be allowed to stand for re-election as a Labour candidate. Abbott told supporters at a protest at Hackney Town Hall last night that she would continue as MP for as long as it is possible. Former cabinet minister Clare Short last night said Abbott had been treated “unforgivably”.

Approximately 2,500 readers participated in a Labour List survey, and 75% said she should be allowed to rest, 11% said her local party should make the decision, 2% said the party or whips should make the decision, and only 11% said she should be blocked.

It also happened shortly after Brighton Kemptown MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle was barred from the party until the conclusion of an inquiry into a complaint filed the previous week. “Lloyd successfully managed to keep the Green threat at bay for multiple elections,” a local Labour source told Labour List. There will be a substantial electoral response if they detach one of their right-wing councilor pals from London, as in other locations along the south coast.

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Momentum’s spokesperson referred to the most recent deselections as a “purge.”

According to the spokesperson, “Team Starmer is targeting left-wing women of color, like Diane Abbott and Faiza Shaheen, for deselection, against the wishes of their local parties.”

A “ruthless re-alignment of Labour is taking place under Starmer that is more far-reaching than anything attempted by Tony Blair,” according to Daily Mirror associate editor Jason Beattie. He continued, “While Blair accommodated the left, Starmer is purging them to establish a party permanently camped on the center ground.”

Chingford Faiza Shahen General Election 2024
Chingford Faiza Shahen General Election 2024

A Chingford and Wood Green party source called the investigation “devious,” pointing out that Shaheen had successfully raised money and “campaigned assiduously” despite the difficulties of juggling it with being a new mother. She was allegedly “totally out of the blue” confronted with the allegations at the last minute before the election.

summary of Chingford Faiza Shahen General Election 2024

They implied that IDS, up against a CLP that was “totally geared up to getting Faiza elected,” would be “laughing to the polling station.” Labor could not be reached for comment at this time. “This is not how the party should be run.”

To avoid any distractions next week, we would much rather get this news out of the way now, an unnamed Labour source told Politico. This week should be dedicated to the contentious mandates under every leader.

“We have selected a fantastic group of candidates in place for the General Election on Thursday, July 4th,” a Labour Party official stated. They will be canvassing nationwide voters to spread the word about Labour’s change program.

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A party source added that the Prime Minister calling a surprise summer election meant selections needed to take place through emergency procedures to make sure everyone had a chance to vote Labour.