Tag Archives: tower hamlets

Why I joined the Lib Dems and stood for election

 

emanuel-andjelic-family

I’ve supported the Lib Dems for as long as I can remember, but until now, only ever from the comfort of my sofa. I’ve always been interested in politics, I studied the subject at college and university, but never felt compelled to get involved.

So what prompted me aged 36 to join the party? Well, on the face of it, it’s easy: Brexit. The referendum result was my call to arms. Like many others I joined the party a few days after the vote, realising that it was time for apathetic liberals (small l) like myself to stand up and fight back.

Most of my adult life was spent in a political system dominated by the centre ground. As a second generation East European, I was proud to be part of a tolerant and generous society that welcomed everyone. Brexit woke me up to how quickly things can change. It was a stark reminder of how xenophobia and intolerance could become prevalent. All those history lessons about the 1930s suddenly began to make sense.

On reflection, the reason I didn’t didn’t get into politics earlier, was probably because I didn’t think I needed to. My views were mainstream and pretty well represented in politics. I joined the fight when I saw this change. The Liberal Democrats were the only party I could see that would be able to revive a fair and tolerant centre ground.

Posted in Op-eds | 9 Comments

Conference Countdown 2016: Tackling global corruption should be a core Liberal campaign

On April 3 2016, just under 12 million documents were leaked from the Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca containing financial details on over 200,000 offshore companies. While the bulk of our nation’s media coverage was of David Cameron’s family investment fund – Blairmore Holdings – and the former Prime Minister of Iceland’s resignation, most news outlets underplayed the real significance of the investigation: the details of shell companies used to profit from criminal activity and how the lack of transparency in opaque jurisdictions such as the British Virgin Islands, Seychelles or Bahamas provides cover for organisations involved in people trafficking, narcotics, selling arms to despotic regimes and terrorism.

On Saturday, Tower Hamlets Liberal Democrats are moving a motion demanding that the UK calls time on the lack of progress in our overseas territories and sets a deadline for the implementation of centralised registers which make the beneficial ownership of companies available both to relevant authorities and to the public.

The UK has a strong record in this area: Vince Cable drove forward the development of legislation for Companies House to implement a register of Persons of Significant Control during the coalition and the register is now starting to be filled with statements of beneficial ownership. It is due for completion in June 2017.

Posted in Conference and Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 8 Comments

LibLink: Elaine Bagshaw: Turning things round in Tower Hamlets

Last month, Liberal Democrat Expand launched with an ambitious plan for the party to widen its net, to work in those areas where we had disappeared.

After the devastating election result last year, one of the first people back into the fray was Elaine Bagshaw, who had to run in a by-election for Mayor in Tower Hamlets.

Since then, she has built a team that is out there on the streets several times a week building an organisation from the ground up.

She writes about what she’s been doing on the Liberal Democrat Expand website:

The first has been about being brave and changing the mindset about “no go” areas. Wards that we were told would never vote Lib Dem had actually never been asked. I’m still shocked that in some places people won’t go and knock on council houses because apparently “they aren’t our people”. We definitely haven’t found this to be the case in Tower Hamlets. From a London perspective, it’s a foolish way to approach things as people move so often. At one point in Tower Hamlets 25% the electoral roll would change every time a new one was issued.

My other issue with “no go” areas is that for us to be in majority government we absolute have to win in places like Poplar & Limehouse and other areas that we dismiss as ‘not our territory’. Poplar & Limehouse is a passion project of mine partly for this reason but also because it’s in these areas that people need Lib Dems the most. Every time we write-off an area we write-off the people in it and that’s not a narrative we should be signed up to.

Posted in LibLink | Also tagged | 5 Comments

Progress for Elaine Bagshaw in Tower Hamlets Mayoral Election

bagshselfieAs you’ll be aware from various posts on Liberal Democrat Voice over the past few weeks, Elaine Bagshaw has been fighting the Tower Hamlets Mayoral Election caused by the disqualification of the previous Mayor, Lutfur Rahman.

Elaine has fought a busy and energetic campaign, helped by new members taking part in their first election. She made progress in number of votes, percentage of the vote and went up a place from 6th to 5th. That ‘s a result that she can be pleased with. The result, from the Tower Hamlets website,  was as follows:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 46 Comments

Video: Elaine Bagshaw’s pitch to be Mayor of Tower Hamlets: Decent social housing, opportunities for young people and ending corruption

In just two weeks’ time, voters in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets will choose a new mayor after the previous incumbent’s ignominious removal from office. 

Our candidate is Elaine Bagshaw, former chair of Liberal Youth and one of the leading lights of this year’s Team 2015.

She explains in just 45 seconds what her priorities would be if she were Mayor.

Posted in News | Also tagged | 1 Comment

Baroness Susan Kramer writes…Why I’m backing Elaine Bagshaw for Tower Hamlets Mayor

Elaine-Bagshaw-launch

Like most of you I don’t “do miserable” and I’ve been itching to start the fight back.  Local Government has always been Lib Dem territory because we believe in communities and remain aghast at how badly so many are served by their local governments.  So when I got a chance to support Elaine Bagshaw in launching her campaign for Mayor of Tower Hamlets I jumped at it.  Of all the places that need effective local Government focussed on people, listening to people and functioning with integrity, Tower Hamlets must be near the top of the list.  As Elaine says, it’s a largely deprived community in the shadow of the extra-ordinary wealth of the City of London.

Elaine has lived in the area for years so she knows Tower Hamlets’ issues like the back of her hand.  But what I also love is that Elaine is part of the new generation who will now take over our party.  I don’t mean just new as in young, though that is true of many, but also the flood of new members of all ages who are joining with such a sense of purpose and with a vision of the future.  Old warhorses like me can provide the back-up but one silver lining of a bad defeat is that a natural passing of the baton takes place.  And goodness those folk did turn out at Elaine’s launch, at least 50 of them, all ready to spend the day on the doorsteps.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

Elaine Bagshaw launches Tower Hamlets mayoral bid

Elaine BagshawElaine Bagshaw launched her campaign for Mayor of Tower Hamlets on Saturday, saying that the borough is in need of a clean-up and a resilient, bold, Liberal Democrat voice in our Tower Hall. The position of mayor is vacant following the conviction of Lutfur Rahman for breaches of election law.

Elaine lives and works in the borough and is offering new ideas and a fresh vision including:

  • Making sure that there are affordable homes for working families, by ensuring that all new developments in the borough include an allocation of social housing
  • Delivering

Posted in Local government and News | 4 Comments
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