By Martin Thomas
The Labour Party’s National Executive (NEC) has said it will ignore a rule-change passed at this year’s Labour conference (25-29 September) to safeguard a local say in shortlisting in short-notice parliamentary selections.
The NEC has cited unspecified legal problems. For the upcoming Old Bexley and Sidcup selection the shortlisting committee will be three NEC members, one Regional Exec, one local, not three local members, one NEC member, and one Regional as in the rule change.
The rule change had to be submitted in June for consideration at conference (while NEC-drafted changes were, as often before, dropped on delegates at the last minute). No legal problems were flagged up then.
On 23 October, newly-elected National Constitutional Committee (NCC) member Rheian Davies was suspended on thin grounds about old social media posts.
At the conference, the left won two out of four National Constitutional Committee places up for election. The elected NCC has been replaced in disciplinary processes involving “protected characteristics” by a board appointed by a committee appointed by the general secretary, but still has a part in others.
Members in local Labour Parties and in the unions must assert ourselves against Keir Starmer’s feverish drive to make Labour “safe for business”.