Green Party pledges to hold Labour run council to account in Barnhill by-election

PUBLISHED: 10:22 10 January 2020

Martin Francis and Peter Murry, Green Party candidates for Alperton by-election

Martin Francis and Peter Murry, Green Party candidates for Alperton by-election


Hoping to add colour - and opposition - to the Labour-dominated council in January’s four by-election openings are two Green Party candidates.

Martin Francis, author of the blog Wembley Matters and Peter Murry, former College of North West London lecturer, are both standing for Barnhill ward.

On January 23 those living in the ward will go the polls to elect replacements for Michael Pavey and Sarah Marquis, two Labour councillors who stood down late last year citing "family reasons".

The Labour candidates in the ward are Mansoor Akram, the brother-in-law of Brent Council leader Muhammed Butt, and activist Gaynor Lloyd, wife of Northwick Park Labour backbencher Cllr Keith Perrin.

Mr Francis, who is also governor of Chalkhill Primary School, in Barnhill Road, described the Labour-run council of being an "[almost] one party council, with only three Conservative councillors in opposition".

He said: "We are standing to be elected as Green councillors for Barnhill to ensure that the Labour council with its huge majority has an effective constructive hardworking opposition holding the council to account for the quality of its services and its decision making.

"As Green councillors we will not be beholden to the leader of the council but instead accountable to our residents."

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Outspoken on council policies on his blog, he added that he and Mr Murry "now want to strengthen that work by bringing it into the council chamber".

He said: "Residents are sick of fly-tipping, litter, missed rubbish collections, dangerous pavements and what appears to be the random removal of street trees.

"They are cynical about meaningless consultations and regeneration schemes that make money for developers but do not address the housing needs of local people.

"For some years we have been actively holding the council to account as citizens (…) and now want to strengthen that work by bringing it into the council chamber."

Kanta Mistry and Stefan Voloseniuc are standing for the Conservative Party and if successful will join Kenton's elected councillors Suresh Kansagara, Reg Colwill and Michael Maurice in the council chamber.

Michael Brooke and Larry Ngan are standing for the Liberal Democrats.

There has been no representation by the party since 2016 when Mapesbury's Helen Carr left to become Independent.

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