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Lutfur Rahman and Tower Hamlets Corruption - collected articles

The London Mayoral election is at serious risk of being stolen

[Please note that there is additional information in the now closed forum:  Lutfur Rahman - collected articles  ]


Last updated at 12:13 PM on 2nd March 2012

Then it emerges that Livingstone's narrow victory was entirely due to one borough. That of Tower Hamlets where there have been remarkably sharp increases in turnout, the number of voters on the register and share of the vote received by Livingstone.

The evidence of massive voter fraud taking place in Tower Hamlets is overwhelming. 'Postal vote farming' where extra names are registered at an address, is not an isolated or random occurrence but is taking place systematically.

The Evening Standard has investigated and found that 'dozens of flats are holding up to eight people per bedroom, according to the electoral register.'

In one case 12 adults are still listed as voters at a three-bedroom flat in Mile End despite having moved out about four months before officials gathered data for the register. A lettings agent said that only 'three or four' of those named had ever lived there.

Cllr Peter Golds, the Conservative opposition leader of the council, has written on Conservative Home this morning about the failure for anyone to take action.

'In 2009 I handed over to the police copies of emails regarding postal vote farming,' he writes. 'The police spoke to the sender who "promised not to do it again" and therefore indicated a prosecution would not be in "the public interest", despite the fine for this being £5,000.

'The electoral commission advises that concerned citizens approach the town hall, who then ask you to send your evidence to the police, who go back to the electoral commission on this merry go round of inertia.'

Cllr Golds adds there is similar indifference to 'appalling intimidation at polling stations.'

This is not a new problem. The 2008 mayoral election saw the Labour share of the vote sharply increase in Tower Hamlets against the trend elsewhere. In the 2004 results Livingstone beat the then Conservative candidate Steve Norris by 16,229 to 10,157.

In the 2008 results we saw Livingstone beat Boris Johnson in that borough by 37,361 to 17,509.

Then we had in April 2010, just before the General Election, an increase in the electorate of 7,000 recorded in just one month.

This is a council where later that year the directly elected Mayor, Lutfur Rahman, stood as an independent but with the support of Livingstone against the official Labour candidate.

Tower Hamlets Council's response is to deny that there is a problem and of course there is no suggestion any of the participants in recent elections were party to any fraud.

'No cases of electoral fraud have been found in Tower Hamlets,' A council spokesman said, adding that the borough 'suffers from very high levels of overcrowding.'

So if the council can't or won't act, who will? What is the Electoral Commission doing about this? Nothing. It has a budget of £24million but when I rang them it became all too clear that it has no power to ensure free and fair elections take place - merely to offer 'guidance.'

It could act as a whistle blower but won't even do that.

When the Conservative MP Lee Scott raised the matter in Parliament he was told by his colleague Gary Streeter MP, who speaks on their behalf of the Electoral Commission, that 'the Commission has been assured by the police and Tower Hamlets electoral registration officer (ERO) that the issue is being treated with the appropriate seriousness.'

Streeter added: 'The Electoral Commission informs me that it has made no specific assessment of the level of (a) over registration or (b) fraudulent registration in the London borough of Tower Hamlets.'

Still all the boxes are ticked: 'The Commission monitors the performance of electoral registration officers (EROs) in Great Britain, including their plans for preventing and detecting electoral malpractice. The most recent report of performance against the standards set by the Commission found that the ERO for Tower Hamlets exceeded this standard in 2010.'

The Cabinet Office Minister Mark Harper, also proposes to do nothing - while 'taking the matter very seriously', of course.

So there we are. There is a serious risk of the election for Mayor of London being stolen yet nothing is being done to avert this from happening in the mother of democracy.

Perhaps we need some international observers from developing countries to help us out. We seem to be unable to manage to ensure a democratic election takes place.

Read more:

More evidence of the 3rd world politics of Tower Hamlets can be found here:

And here:

Tags: corruption, criminality, electoral, fraud, hamlets, homophobia, tower

Views: 1143

Replies to This Discussion

 I'm sure this has been a well investigated problem that just won't get recognised. What troubles me is the lack of investigation by the electrol registra, and of course the local benefits office. Stop the housing benefits for these non existant people and remove them from the electrol roll. Or would that be to easy.

Hmm... I'm thinking of a way to provide statistics to demonstrate the scale of the problem.

Government minister Grant Shapps calls for Tower Hamlets ‘electoral fraud’ probe

Mike Brooke Thursday, February 23, 2012
7:18 AM

The row over election fraud in London’s East End has blown up again with Local Government Minister Grant Shapps calling for an inquiry into Tower Hamlets Electoral Roll.




His move comes after fresh allegations surfaced that addresses are being used fraudulently to register bogus voters in time for the London Mayor election in 10 weeks’ time.

“This appears to be a deeply-concerning situation,” the Minister said. “There must be an immediate investigation to get to the bottom of this.”

The electoral rigging scandal has hit Tower Hamlets politics three times in six years, involving the last two General Elections and the election for its first executive mayor.

Police called at 88 suspect addresses in one investigation alone, following the 2010 election for mayor, it has emerged. The Town Hall removed 141 suspect names from the register—but 5,166 new names were received before the election deadline, with little time to check them out.

Inquiries have also been carried out by the Crown Prosecution Service and the Electoral Commission.

Calls for a fresh inquiry have also come today (Wed) in a joint statement by East End MPs Rushanara Ali and Jim Fitzpatrick, Tower Hamlets Council’s Labour Opposition group leader Joshua Peck and London Assembly member John Biggs.

Mr Biggs told The Docklands & East London Advertiser: “We need an urgent investigation into these allegations so the public can trust the voting process in May. Police also need to take an interest.”

The call from the Local Government Minister for an inquiry was sparked by complaints to Downing Street from Tower Hamlets Tory Opposition group leader Peter Golds, who is demanding “a full and proper investigation to maintain the integrity of our electoral system.”

Police carried out four separate inquiries after Labour’s deselected candidate Lutfur Rahman won the election for Tower Hamlets Mayor as a rebel independent in October, 2010.

Police called at 88 addresses after the election. A 33-year-old man was arrested at his home in Whitechapel, concerning alleged electoral fraud, Scotland Yard confirmed today.

He appeared before Westminster magistrates last November, where he denied breaching the 1983 Representation of the People Act, and has been summonsed for trial in April.

The Advertiser’s own research found the 158,549 voters on the books in September, 2009, had shot up more than 6,000 by the following April—a month before the 2010 General and local elections.

Another thousand names had been added by Polling Day itself, now totalling 171,870.

The Electoral Commission has since been told of six addresses in Bromley-by-Bow with suspect listings—a house in Rainhill Way with 13 voters registered, another with eight, while four flats in Limscott House had 33 voters listed between them.

Tower Hamlets council has refuted press allegations that voter fraud is rife in the East End.

“All allegations are referred to the police for investigation,” said a Town Hall spokesman.

“We have taken measures to prevent this issue. Electoral registers are by definition out of date—people move away, but don’t have to tell us.”

Multiple registrations at single addresses was put down to the East End’s severe overcrowding.

“We have many families of several generations living in overcrowded accommodation,” the spokesman added. “Some private rented housing was being used on a ‘shift’ basis for large numbers of people.”

The Town Hall insists it rigorously checks suspicious registrations and, where necessary, takes people off the register. Its electoral inspectors call at properties with more than eight registrations.

The first time vote-rigging allegations surfaced was in the 2006 General Election when George Galloway won Bethnal Green & Bow from Labour.

His Respect Party complained of Labour ‘vote rigging’ to police.

More allegations were made four years later during the 2010 General and local elections in May and the Mayor election that October.

“We raised song and dance about it,” Respect’s Tower Hamlets organiser Rob Hoveman told the Advertiser this week.

“The registration system is riddled with potential for corruption. We gave evidence to a police inquiry—but the people we spoke to on the doorstep during canvassing wouldn’t come forward and make statements.”

Galloway lost in 2010 when he came in third at Poplar & Limehouse behind Labour and Conservative—by such a large margin that Respect conceded any electoral rigging would have made no difference.

Where it would have counted, it maintains still, is in marginal wards in local elections where a handful of votes could tip the balance.

'The electoral commission advises that concerned citizens approach the town hall, who then ask you to send your evidence to the police, who go back to the electoral commission on this merry go round of inertia.'

I've just realised why they don't care about this large-scale electoral fraud.  I looked up the candidates from the last general election, and every single one was a muslim.  So, if every party is fielding a muslim, the Electoral Commission must just work on the multicultural principle that Tower Hamlets is now 80% muslim, therefore elections should be conducted in a culturally-sensitive way.  That is, it is up to each party to indulge in gerrymandering, and to boost the electoral roll with fake voters of their own.  Any party which does not do that, is clearly not serious about winning.  

In fact, they could just forget about voting, and declare the party who manages to register the most fake electors as the election winner.  

I think they might even encourage some more blatant bribery and corruption, as a way of making it really feel like a cross between Bangladesh and Somalia.

Police to guard voting booths at Tower Hamlets

48 hours before polls open, council's Tory leader calls for urgent measures to protect voters

Police officers are to be stationed at every polling station in Tower Hamlets after the Met launched an official investigation into allegations of electoral fraud.

Officers will man all 70 polling locations in the borough on Thursday alongside borough enforcement officers to prevent voter intimidation.

The measures come as the Met launched an investigation into “unprecedented” evidence of voter fraud in the key London borough less than 48 hours before the mayoral polls open.

Police sources today admitted the measures were unusual.

Concerned councillors have called for election security to be tightened to prevent a repeat of alleged irregularities said to have contributed to the shock by-election defeat of a Labour candidate in a previously safe seat earlier this month.

The Met said it would investigate claims the poll in the Banglatown and Spitalfields ward had been rigged — giving victory to Gulam Robbani, an independent candidate backed by the borough’s mayor Lutfur Rahman. He won by just 43 votes.

One-in-seven of the postal votes cast in the by-election was rejected.

The Met investigation comes 24 hours after local government minister Grant Shapps launched an attack on the Electoral Commission, saying: “We cannot afford to be complacent.”

Councillor Peter Golds, the borough’s Tory leader, said: “The mayoral election could be close. The issue of postal vote fraud and intimidation could be make-or-break.”

He added: “These allegations have flown around Tower Hamlets for many years yet previous police inquiries have amounted to little more than perfunctory checks before saying everything is okay. At last it feels like we might be getting somewhere.”

Joshua Peck, leader of the council’s Labour group, said: “The issue goes deeper than that — having a police officer at a polling station is not going to prevent some of the things that have been going on — about whether people are legitimately on the register.”

The police investigation comes after the borough’s returning officer ordered a probe following a dramatic rise in postal votes at some addresses in the borough. Residents in the Spitalfields ward of Tower Hamlets said campaigners had been knocking on doors and collecting ballot papers, offering to post the votes on their behalf.

There is also allegations of apparent “ghost voting”, with as many as eight voters — all with postal votes — registered in some flats. Witnesses reported that one vote was cast by a man who had emigrated to Bangladesh and later died. There were also reports of a vote being cast by somebody in prison.

Both those claims have been investigated and refuted by the council.

A Tower Hamlets spokesman said: “As with previous elections, Tower Hamlets uses a mixture of police and enforcement officers to ensure free and fair elections. The strategy in Tower Hamlets has been reviewed again to ensure we have adequate police and enforcement officer cover for every polling place as needed.”

Poll could be decided in the courts

Peter Dominiczak

Allegations of vote fraud in Tower Hamlets have dogged the borough for years.

But it was only after an investigation by this newspaper and repeated claims by local Conservative councillor Peter Golds that the authorities took note.

Experts say that potential voter fraud could have a serious impact on this week’s tightly fought mayoral and Assembly elections.

Following this paper’s investigation in February, Bernard Jenkin, chairman of the Commons Public Administration Select Committee, said the battle between Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone for the London mayoralty could even end in the courts because of the allegations.

He said: “If it’s very tight, the poll could finish up being contested in the courts.” Tory co-chairman Sayeeda Warsi has said “supposedly independent activists who are backing the Livingstone campaign” were linked to alleged ballot-rigging in Tower Hamlets.

A spokesman for Labour’s mayoral candidate Mr Livingstone said: “Voter fraud is an extremely  serious offence — evidence of any illegal activity should be passed immediately to the police to investigate.”

A spokesman for Mr Johnson said today: “What is happening in Tower Hamlets sends a message to everyone across London that if they don’t get out and vote for Boris Johnson, who knows what the result could be?”

Police outside a Tower Hamlets polling station called reinforcements today after a candidate alleged  that he had been threatened by activists from rival parties.

Chris Smith, standing for the Greens in the London Assembly elections, claimed that one activist threatened to “punch his lights out” when he complained about the crowd handing out Respect and Labour leaflets outside St Matthias Primary, off Brick Lane.

Officers were today guarding polling stations across Tower Hamlets after the Met launched a formal investigation into allegations of electoral fraud in the borough. Police were called in after reports of voter intimidation outside polling stations at previous elections.

It was feared today that activists were “harassing” potential voters. Mr Smith said: “I came down here at about 10am and there were at least 20 Labour and Respect activists handing out leaflets just outside. Election rules state very clearly that each party is only allowed one teller outside each polling station, the rest must be a safe distance away.

“I complained to the official inside and when I came back out the Respect guy started mouthing off to me. When I told him what they were doing is not allowed, he threatened to punch my lights out.

“It’s amazing that this is still going on around here. The groups that gather outside are very intimidating. With all the problems we’ve had in Tower Hamlets this is the last thing we need.”

Mr Smith said he was too frightened to stay at the polling station. “It’s not right that people are being  harassed,” he added.

Caroline Kerswell, the Tory candidate in the Weaver ward’s by-election, witnessed the altercation. She said: “We were standing here discussing electoral rules with them, then one guy threatened to punch his lights out.

“They’ve been here since early in the morning and they’re very intimidating. People coming to vote are nervous. We want a clean election in Tower Hamlets because of the reports of corruption.” 

A Tower Hamlets spokesman said: “We understand that the police have dealt with an issue outside a polling station in Brick Lane this morning. The police deal with public order offences, including issues outside polling stations, and we are pleased that this incident has been resolved quickly and peacefully.”

It came as the chair of the Electoral Commission today called for photo ID to be demanded at all polling stations in a bid to stop voter fraud. Jenny Watson urged the Government to change the law to “help us all be sure our voting system is safe”.

She said: “There is more the Government can do to help us all be sure our voting system is safe. The Electoral Commission wants to see our registration system tightened up and it’s good that the Government plans to introduce new laws to do this which will apply to any of us who want to vote by post before the 2015 General Election.

We think it is also time to have a proper debate about whether we all need to show photo ID at polling stations.”

There were fears that voter fraud in Tower Hamlets could influence the result of today’s mayoral election. The Met is investigating claims that a by-election earlier this month in the Banglatown and Spitalfields ward was  rigged — giving victory to Gulam Robbani, an independent candidate backed by the borough’s mayor Lutfur Rahman. Turnout in the by-election was nearly double that of the previous election in the ward — 31 per cent to 17 per cent.

Residents said campaigners had been knocking on doors and collecting ballot papers, offering to post the vote. Mr Robbani won the election by just 43 votes. There is no suggestion he was involved in fraud.

Voters today expressed shock at the presence of police outside stations. Jason Caffrey, 41, said: “I was surprised when I came out to see a van full of officers outside. Corrupt practice in elections damages trust and while there’s no smoke without fire it’s hard to know exactly how high the flames are.”

Of course, back in the 3rd world, these would not have been idle threats.  One of them would be dead by now.  Cultural enrichment from the religion of peace.

A London councillor has been arrested for allegedly threatening to kill a rival in a packed town hall chamber.

The Labour politician was seized following the extraordinary confrontation last night with a woman councillor in the Olympic borough of Tower Hamlets.

Screams were heard coming from the town hall as the midnight debate descended into a “violent fracas”.

Kosru Uddin, 45, is said to have made death threats to Rania Khan, a supporter of Independent mayor Lutfur Rahman. Mr Uddin was still in custody today. One source, who was present at the meeting, said: “There was violence. It was just chaos.”

The clash is the latest political crisis to hit Tower Hamlets — dogged by allegations of voter fraud and claims that Mr Rahman is linked to groups supporting extremism.

It erupted at about 11.35pm after the chamber had been cleared of the public and press. One eyewitness said today it started when Ms Khan referred to Mr Uddin as a “chamcha” — a Bengali word which translates as spoon but is used to mean lackey or lickspittle.

Mr Uddin is then said to have had an angry confrontation in the council chamber with Ms Khan’s mother, Independent Limehouse councillor Lutfa Begum, over the use of the word. He is alleged to have threatened Ms Khan before the police were called.

Mr Rahman had been present earlier but is not thought to have been in the chamber at the time of the altercation. Independent councillor Ms Khan today said she was “on the verge of mentally and physically collapsing” following the clash. Sources today told the Evening Standard the mayhem unfolded after a disagreement about the appointment of a new chief executive.

Labour and Tory group members were arguing that the recruitment process had been “flawed” and refused to reach an agreement over the appointment of Aman Dalvi.

The borough has been dogged by political controversy in recent years. Mr Rahman was ousted from the Labour Party over alleged links to Islamic extremists before successfully fighting the mayoral election as an Independent candidate. He has denied all the allegations about his links to extremism.

It also emerged this month that the council was facing a police investigation into allegations of voter fraud during a by-election.

Ms Khan, who is the cabinet member for culture on the council, said she was “a bit shaken up” as a result of the confrontation.

She added: “I don’t want to say anything more than that at the moment because I don’t know how far it will go. I am on the verge of mentally and physically collapsing. It is just not right for me to be talking about it. I can’t deal with it at the moment.”

Councillor Peter Golds, the leader of the Conservative group on the council, said: “The meeting was extremely acrimonious and unpleasant. My group were out of the way when this incident happened.”

One source, who was present at the meeting, said: “There was a violent fracas. It was chaos. But frankly, we’ve seen worse in Tower Hamlets before. People have asked for the police to be called during meetings in the past.”

The Met said: “Tower Hamlets police arrested a 45-year-old man on suspicion of making threats to kill. It was in relation to an incident that occurred during a meeting at the town hall at about 11.35pm. The man is still in custody at an east London police station.”

A council spokesman said: “Following an alleged incident in the council chamber last night, we can confirm that the police were called. We understand they interviewed members of the council. We will be helping the police with their inquiries as required.”

Urdu TV channel in Britain in breach of broadcasting standards for promoting Lutfur Rahman.  What do they expect?  The multi-culturalists say "come to this country but you keep your colourful village politics and corrupt practices..."

Nothing will be done in job centres or councils as they're full of muslims who'll back each other up including printing off peoples police records for public viewing among dealers, junkies and other muslims!

More on taxi fraud at Tower Hamlets council.

Note how how muslim councillors are able to switch allegiance from the SWP to the Tories. 

Note how a councillor claims taxi fares to pay for his apperances on Channel S, an islamic extremist channel.

The channel was founded (and is still closely influenced by) a convicted fraudster and hosts regular appeals for the hardline East London Mosque – home to Lutfur’s biggest backers, the Muslim supremacists of the Islamic Forum of Europe. Another of Lutfur’s main backers is closely involved with the channel. Channel S has form as long as your arm for blatant and repeated breaches of virtually every part of the broadcasting code on fairness, advertising, accuracy and political impartiality.

The full extent of links between Tower Hamlets council and a controversial Bangladeshi TV channel can be revealed today.

An investigation by the Evening Standard has found Channel S provided such favourable political coverage to mayor Lutfur Rahman that regulator Ofcom ruled some of its programmes illegal.

Shows on the satellite station, based in Walthamstow, did not “inform and educate” but were broadcast to promote Mr Rahman “in a positive light”.

The problems occurred under previous owner Mohammed Ferdhaus, who was jailed for fraud in 2008. Ofcom is powerless to act as Channel S, which is watched by tens of thousands, is now under new management.

The mayor employs Channel S journalist Mohammed Jubair as a personal adviser on a publicly funded salary. Tower Hamlets — which has the highest child poverty rate in Britain, with four in 10 children living in poverty — spent £12,000 sponsoring a Channel S awards ceremony last May.

Mr Jubair appears to have played a role in the payment, according to documents released under freedom of information laws.

Ministers are so concerned about Ofcom’s inability to tackle the issue that they are preparing to introduce legislation. Local government minister Brandon Lewis said: “Such actions are not just a misuse of public funds, they are harmful to local democracy and an independent, free media.

“We are looking at putting [measures] on a statutory basis to address this abuse of taxpayers’ money.”

Mr Rahman, an ally of Ken Livingstone, was elected as an independent in 2010. He has been supported by coverage from Channel S, which broadcasts to the borough’s 80,000-strong Bangladeshi population. Ofcom has found that its coverage of Tower Hamlets breached broadcasting rules five times since 2008.

The latest censure, last month, said an advert featuring Mr Rahman misled the public. After the previous “serious breaches”, the regulator said it wanted a “significant fine”, but the station was beyond reach as its holding company had entered liquidation and re-formed under new owners.

In May last year, the council paid £12,000 to sponsor Channel S’s awards ceremony. An invoice approving the payment contains a note from Tower Hamlets director of communications Takki Sulaiman. “Please proceed with Jubair,” it reads.

Mr Jubair earns £175 a day for a three-day week. Peter Golds, leader of the local Conservative group, said: “There is a conflict of interest. Mr Jubair cannot be on the council payroll while reporting on the council.”

Mr Ferdhaus still presents shows on the channel. At Croydon crown court in 2008, he was jailed for 18 months over “crash-for-cash” bogus accidents. Tower Hamlets said: “Ofcom censured the advertisers not the council. We are considering our position in respect of future advertising.” It said Mr Jubair “supports the Mayor in fulfilling the commitments he has made to local people”.

Of the sponsorship of Channel S, the council added: “We sponsor a range of events across the community to promote council services.”

Channel S said: “Channel S Television Ltd in its present form has only been trading since the end of June 2012. Everything that you mention was prior to June 2012 and I cannot comment on it as it was under different management at that time.”

Tower Hamlets Councillor, taken to court for refusal to pay his/her council tax.  Council covers up this scandal.

The odds on it being a muslim are huge.  They are at least 3x over-represented in prisons.  They are 66% of the councillors in a borough where they are supposedly 34% of the population (and huge numbers of those are under 18).

Muslims only believe in taxing non-muslims, not the other way round.


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