Sunday, June 08, 2008

NEC Elections

Ballot papers will be being dispatched shortly and members will be able to vote for up to six representatives of the CLP section.

Obviously I hope you'll vote for me and that you'll study the voting booklet and decide which other candidates you support. It's vital you do vote - the last time only 20% of members voted - it is our party and we need to make sure we are involved.

Personally I think we need independent minded members - who don't take a whip from outside organisations - and we certainly need more ethnic minority members, younger members and more women members. It is also important that we get more genuinely active Labour Party members.

That's why I'll be voting for:

Ellie Reeves: Ellie has been a breath of fresh air since she got elected last time. She's active in a lot of campaigns - both Labour Party and wider - and confidently speaks her mind at the NEC.

Sonika Nuwal: Sonika was the first woman Labour leader of Ealing Council and is a good representative of the strongly Labour supporting Sikh community. Very intelligent and organised, she knows the reality of being a young mum and active in the Labour Party.

Deborah Gardiner: Deborah is active in the Labour Party on the Isle of Wight and leader of the Labour group there - actually having a Labour group on the Isle of Wight is a real achievement!

Originally from Heywood near Manchester, Deborah is an active member of the National Policy Forum and knows the crucial importance of keeping the Labour Party active in the difficult areas of the South of England.

Labour is a National Party - people who are like me and thousands of others try to keep it alive in the urban areas - we need people like Deborah and her colleagues to keep it alive in the South.

Azhar Ali: Azhar was the Labour leader of Pendle Council and has been a European candidate. He'll be a voice not just for the Muslim community but for all Labour members.

All the above are good Labour Party members and members of their Trade Unions. If they get elected we will have a more energetic, independent minded NEC - and that's got to be a good thing.

That still leaves me personally with a spare sixth vote - I haven't made my mind up what to do with it yet.

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