Newcastle City Council leader ‘immensely sad’ after losing selection vote

Newcastle City Council leader ‘immensely sad’ after losing selection vote
Nick Forbes, a prominent member of the Labour Party, will consider whether to elsewhere after not being picked to stand in his ward of 22 years.

The leader of Newcastle City Council was “immensely sad” to have lost a vote to be reselected for Labour in the local elections in May.

Nick Forbes 48, is a member of the party’s National Executive Committee and a senior figure in the Local Government Association.

Seen as a moderate or centrist, Mr Forbes has led the Labour-run local authority since 2011 and has been a controversial figure during austerity, making cuts which he said were forced on him by central government.

On Tuesday night he lost a vote to be selected as a Labour candidate for the Arthur’s Hill ward, after more than 20 years as a councillor, with Abdul Samad winning instead.

The Labour Party’s selection processes in the city have not yet been completed and a number of party members have already approached me asking if I will stand in a different ward in the city

Nick Forbes

Mr Forbes will lose his place on the council unless he is parachuted in as a candidate in another Newcastle ward.

In a statement he said he was now considering whether to try to do that, adding he was proud of what he had achieved in the ward, was “immensely sad” that he had not been selected and congratulated Mr Samad on his win.

“The Labour Party’s selection processes in the city have not yet been completed and a number of party members have already approached me asking if I will stand in a different ward in the city,” Mr Forbes said.

“I would now like to take some time to consider these options for the future.”

In 2019 Mr Forbes failed in a bid to become Labour candidate for North of Tyne mayor, losing to eventual winner Jamie Driscoll, who is from the left of the party.

A source said Mr Forbes, who sometimes attends the shadow cabinet, had opposed Jeremy Corbyn when he was party leader, which made him a “target for left-wingers”.

He survived a leadership challenge last year, but the insider felt it was unlikely Mr Forbes would try to gain selection in another ward as he could be targeted again.

The source said: “What makes it particularly brutal is if he had just been defeated as council leader he could have stayed as a councillor and remained on the LGA, but if he is not an elected representative, that’s the end of it.”

As well as having pro-Corbyn enemies, Mr Forbes did not navigate the “cliques” of local Newcastle politics, sticking to his own side too much, the source suggested.

コメントを残す

メールアドレスが公開されることはありません。