The author of a letter supposedly written by a “former Green party supporter” criticising Lambeth Cllr Scott Ainslie and hand delivered to homes in Streatham yesterday (Sunday) has been exposed as a Labour activist.
Copies of the the letter were delivered in St Leonard’s ward where Cllr Ainslie, the only Green on Lambeth council, is seeking re-election.
But the letter’s author Nevita Forrest is actually one of the signatories on the nomination papers for all three LABOUR candidates in St Leonard’s ward – including current Cllrs Robert Hill and Saleha Jaffer.
And although the letter appears to be handwritten it is actually PRINTED – and in very small print at the bottom it says: “Printed and produced by Paul Mortimer on behalf of Lambeth Labour” with their address at 264 Rosendale Road SE24.
The letter says: “I’ve been unimpressed by their local record and their negative campaign in Streatham.
“I was disappointed when I found out that the Green councillor, who promised to be a strong voice, refused to sit on Lambeth council’s scrutiny committee.*
“I was shocked to hear that they voted against proposals for new council housing…
“They have been working hand in glove with Conservatives spending all their time attacking Labour.”
(As News From Crystal Palace has reported on numerous occasions, Cllr Ainslie and Conservative opposition leader Cllr Tim Briggs opposed Labour’s Homes for Lambeth scheme to demolish six council estates. None of the Labour councillors in any of the wards where the six estates are did anything to oppose the planned demolition of their constituents homes – Ed.)
The letter continues: “They seem more interested in playing party politics than getting things done.”
The letter goes on to praise the two current Labour ward councillors and the third Labour candidate.
“Their achievements show that Streatham succeeds with more hard-working councillors not fewer.
“I’ve decided to cast my three (underlined) votes for the Labour candidates and elect a team who will genuinely stand up for the area not just what suits them.
“I hope that for the benefit of everyone in our community that you will do the same.” – Nevita Forrest, local resident and former Green supporter.
Streatham Green party Tweeted: “Don’t believe the untruths in this letter produced by the Labour party. “The supposed writer signed nomination papers for Labour candidates, is a Labour activist and, we are told by her family, has never considered voting Green. “It’s a fake.”
And in a statement Lambeth Green party told News From Crystal Palace: “We are shocked that Lambeth Labour has resorted to this kind of tactic. “The allegations in the letter against the Green party councillor are all untrue and we are confident voters won’t be fooled by it.
“It shows how close this election is between Labour and the Green party in some parts of Lambeth, where Green party candidates stand a strong chance of being elected on May 3rd.
“On the doorsteps people are telling us they appreciate that in the last four years just one Green Party councillor has worked hard for local people in his ward and at the same time held the ruling party to account on issues such as financial mismanagement and its unpopular programmes of housing demolition and library closures.”
Stephen Donnelly (who has the same name as the third candidate in St Leonard’s) Retweeted StreathamGreenParty
Woah,(sic) hang on chaps. Firstly, you’re wrong in point of fact: she’s voted Green previously. Secondly, why are you pestering someone’s family about this? It’s weird, cut it out.
In response to allegations in the letter Lambeth Green party say: Scott did not vote with the Conservatives for cuts to Lambeth’s budget (you can see his voting on the budget at: https://moderngov.lambeth.gov.uk/documents/g10234/ Printed%20minutes%20Wednesday%2021-Feb-2018%2019.00%20Council.pdf?T=1)
Far from opposing building council housing, Lambeth Green party has positive proposals for increasing the numbers of council and genuinely affordable housing. We do oppose the demolition of people’s council homes without their consent, which is Lambeth Labour’s only proposal for housing regeneration. You can see more on this here: http://streathamnews.blogspot.co.uk/2018/03/housing-in-lambeth-facts.html
Scott has used his role as a councillor to ‘call in’ for scrutiny more decisions than other councillors and his record in raising people’s concerns in the council chamber, on planning and licensing committees, and with council officers through members enquiries is exemplary. As you can check for yourself, he has been far more active on behalf of Streatham residents than either of the two Labour councillors in St Leonard’s ward: http://streathamnews.blogspot.co.uk/2018/04/clean-campaign-update-scotts-strong.html