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Delph Hosts Feisty By-Election Debate

(left to right) Green candidate Peter Allen, Debbie Abrahams of Labour, debate moderator Bob Rodgers, Conservative Kashif Ali, Elwyn Watkins of the Liberal Democrats, and UKIP candidate Paul Nuttall at today's hustings in Delph.

Five of the candidates in Thursday’s Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election took part in a well-attended hustings meeting in Delph this afternoon. At times, the debate was the most intense we’ve seen in the campaign so far.

Proceedings at the Millgate Centre were delayed by the presence of the BNP’s Derek Adams, who took to the stage and refused to leave until he was escorted away by the police. Once he was off the premises, chairman Bob Rodgers began with a question about parking matters in the local village.

Liberal Democrat Elwyn Watkins responds to a question.

Liberal Democrat Elwyn Watkins, who lives in the centre of Delph, said the issues surrounding speed limits, safety and pedestrian crossings in the village were “quite complicated,” adding that he felt it was “primariliy a parish council and borough council issue.” But he promised to do what he could if elected to reach a solution.

Debbie Abrahams of Labour criticised the councils for not being able to resolve the issues, and praised the work of the local Delph Traffic Group which has carried out surveys on the matters. She said she’d “like to bang some heads together” if she became our MP, to get things sorted.

Conservative Kashif Ali said he was “broadly sympathetic” with the Traffic Group’s proposals for a 20mph limit and a crossing outside the school, and said it was “scandalous” that the local councils “haven’t acted on the local surveys.”

Green candidate Peter Allen told the audience that it wouldn’t be too surprised to learn that his party supported traffic control measures, and he went on to criticise the lack of crossings in Grasscroft. UKIP’s Paul Nuttall said his party’s policy was to allow local people to force local referenda on such issues, if they can collect enough signatures demanding one.

Labour candidate Debbie Abrahams makes her point.

The issue of the scrapped Saddleworth School building, which has featured prominently throughout the campaign, was raised once again. Mrs Abrahams, who has described the government’s decision to end the project as “a travesty,” praised Labour’s record in office, during which time she said they delivered “smaller class sizes, better pay for teachers, and improved educational facilities.”

But Mr Watkins criticised the last government, accusing it of going on a “trolley dash” in its last months in office, and making promises it couldn’t keep: “There never ever was any money for Saddleworth School,” he said.

Mr Ali agreed about unfunded spending promises, adding: “Saddleworth does need a new school, but it’s a luxury you can only afford when the public finances are under control.”

Mr Nuttall described the debate over school building as “fiddling while Rome burns.” He called for a return to selection and grammar schools in a bid to halt what he called falling standards. However, Mr Allen said the Greens were in favour of no cuts to public spending, and went on to slam Private Finance Initiatitive projects, of which Saddleworth School would have been one, as “expensive” and “lacking accountability.”

Conservative candidate Kashif Ali sat next to the debate chairman, Bob Rodgers.

Some of the feistiest exchanges of the afternoon came next, as a question about whether the would-be MPs would put the constituency above their party in Westminster turned into a discussion about the increase in tuition fees.

Mr Watkins was heckled as he defended his position that he would have voted in favour of the proposals for the sake of the coalition government, despite his own opposition to tuition fees. He also stressed other aspects of the measures, including a better deal for part-time students and more apprenticeships.

Mrs Abrahams said the people of Oldham East and Saddleworth would always be her first concern, while Mr Ali said his first move if a conflict arose would be to try to change his party’s view, but that he would always go along with the opinion of his constituents.

Mr Nuttall would be the only UKIP MP at Westminster if elected, and said that would make him an “independent voice” for our area. Mr Allen would join Green MP Caroline Lucas in parliament if he’s successful, and said he was “proud to stand on the Green Party’s manifesto,” and that he would do what he could to implement those policies.

There was a packed crowd at the Millgate Centre for the afternoon's debate.

The coalition government’s plans to give GPs and health professionals a lot more power in the NHS were also hotly debated. Mr Ali described it “as a continuation of something that’s been happening in the NHS for 20 years, even more local decision-making.” Mr Watkins broadly echoed that view, saying that he agreed with the principle of having health professionals taking more decisions.

Mr Nuttall drew a few gasps and jeers from the crowd when he called for more of a “free market approach” to the NHS, which he described as a “monolithic hangover of days gone by.”

Mrs Abrahams, who works in public health herself, said she had experienced “despair and poor morale” among colleagues over the proposals, adding that “the BMA doesn’t want it, and most GPs don’t want it.” Mr Allen then quoted some comments made by Mrs Abrahams herself when she quit her job as Chair of Rochdale Primary Care Trust in 2006 over increasing private involvement in the NHS, adding: “We don’t want privatisation!” That led to one of many warm rounds of applause Mr Allen received during the debate.

The police ask the BNP's Derek Adams to leave.

Before the debate began, BNP candidate Derek Adams, who was holding a sit-in protest on the stage because he hadn’t been invited to take part, had to be escorted away by the police. Although he had a few cheering supporters with him, he was roundly booed by the rest of the audience as he was led out.

Later, the BNP published the phone number of the Millgate Centre on its website and asked its supporters to phone up and complain about the incident. The people who run the centre have asked Saddleworth News to make it clear that it had no role in putting on the debate, and has no political affiliation. The decision to exclude the BNP was taken by organisers from the Delph Community Association.

Nick Watts from Uppermill was also in the audience, and he’s written his view of the debate on his Urban Haze blog here.

A total of ten candidates are standing in the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election. You can get in-depth interviews with Labour’s Debbie Abrahams here, BNP candidate Derek Adams here, Conservative Kashif Ali here, Peter Allen of the Greens here, Pirate Party UK candidate Loz Kaye here, Stephen Morris of the English Democrats here, UKIP candidate Paul Nuttall here and Liberal Democrat Elwyn Watkins here.

Police escort Derek Adams off the premises.

The other candidates are David Bishop of the Bus Pass Elvis Party and Nick “The Flying Brick” Delves from the Monster Raving Loony Party.

Polling day is on Thursday. Lots of other senior politicians have been campaigning in our area in recent weeks, and you can read and listen to David Cameron’s interview with Saddleworth News here. You can hear from Foreign Secretary William Hague here.

An interview with the Deputy Prime Minister and Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg is here, while a chat with Lib Dem Business Secretary Vince Cable is here. You can hear from Labour leader Ed Miliband here, here and here, and a conversation with Shadow Chancellor Alan Johnson here. UKIP leader Nigel Farage spoke to Saddleworth News here.

To read full coverage of the by-election so far from Saddleworth News, click here.

53 comments to Delph Hosts Feisty By-Election Debate

  • [...] not to invite him in the first place. A report of the meeting can be found in a local paper here. It seems that the English Democrat candidate wasn't invited either. Although, this might be a [...]

  • Oliver

    Shows how bad things have got, banning candidates = democracy?

  • Kenny Davis

    What a disgrace of a country we have become. Where they forcibly remove a candidate who is standing in the by-election.

    We have no free speech in this country anymore. We are now starting to see the signs of a police state. It may be a soft police state but that will soon change.

  • Russell Family Man

    Democracy my A**E

  • I think that the Community Association should have invited all candidates in the election. To exclude those standing is undemocratic and rather undermines the whole point of a hustings. I am disappointed that the audience did not want to hear all views so that they could make informed choices. I suspect, however, that many of those attending had already chosen their favoured candidate!

  • Michael Stewart

    Ironic how the anti-democracy idiots in the crowd shouted “fascism is a disgrace” when a legal and popular candidate was being dragged out and denied his right to freedom of speech. Perhaps they should pay less attention to political correctness in schools and more attention to teaching English? That way people might understand words like “fascism” and recognise it in open practice…

  • Whilst it would’ve been nice to have all candidates present at the hustings, it is not compulsory for hustings organisers to invite all candidates. Indeed, I am surprised the Green and UKIP candidates were invited as most hustings just invite “the big 3″.

    Pirate Party UK leader and candidate Loz Kaye was quite happy to sit in the audience and allow the hustings to run as the organisers wanted it to, the BNP candidate should’ve had the good grace to do so as well.

    Certainly not the way to behave if we are collectively trying to rebuild trust and respect in politics and politicians.

  • Katy Boulton

    It is absolutely within the rights of the organisers of this hustings to choose not to invite the BNP onto the platform. What happened in Delph on Sunday does not for one moment indicate that we live in an undemocratic, fascist, police state.

    In all this talk of democratic rights let’s remember a couple of things. Firstly the BNP are standing, leafleting, canvassing and campaigning freely in this election, indicating quite clearly that we do not live in an undemocratic police state.

    Secondly let’s remind ourselves of what the BNP stand actually for. Their website talks of
    ‘…an overwhelming and extinguishing of Britain and British identity under a tsunami of immigration…’ and about preserving the British ‘homeland’ (remember who else used that word?) for ‘indigenous British people’. This is the totally unacceptable language of racism. And I am sure that the vast majority of voters in Oldham and Saddleworth will stand firmly against the BNP and all they represent when they vote on Thursday.

  • Eddy

    Absolute disgrace when you remove a candidate that has every right to be involved. And then you have the lack of moral conscience to gloat about the fact that you refuse to act in a democratic manner. What you are actually showing again is that you are unwilling to listen to the people. I was on the streets of Oldham on Saturday and there was an overwhelming support for Derek and the British National Party as a whole. By barring him from the husting you have actually strengthened peoples resolve. I hope that you reap what you have sown at the election proper!

  • David Bradley

    I hope people will realise that if incidents such as this are allowed to continue, they will wake up one morning and find that they have no choice whatsoever in which political party they can vote for. Derek Adams is a legitimate candidate for a legitimate political party, whether you like Mr Adams’s political views or those of the party that he represents is irrelevant. What is relevant is that people of the ward of delph should have access to a fully democratic electoral process, if they are denied that access because one political party demands that another is excluded it is fascism in action.
    Democracy is a right, do not allow them to take it from you.

  • Tommy Atkins

    This is very sinister indeed. Mr. Adams has committed no crime and has every right to be there reinforced by the representation of the people Act. The police should have refused to remove MR. Adams as this constitutes unlawful interference in the electoral process. It seems we have mob rule instead of democratic process now. Whether you agree or disagree with The BNP remember the words of Noam Chomsky…’If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all.’

  • david oloughlin

    democracy what democracy hoe can a candidate now be able to attened this freedom of speech my arse

  • pauline

    I am disgusted that that sort of behaviour should go on in a so called democratic society.
    They (the powers that be)..allow candidates from minority parties and yet not a candidate from the 4th largest party THE BRITISH NATIONAL PARTY.

  • Mick Braun

    I live in Essex and I’m appalled at the treatment of Derek Adams, I am a BNP supporter for their policies, It seems to me as though the establishment are frightened of Nationalism. My son is married to a Cypriot woman and I rent my home from an Indian women whom are lovely, so where on earth do you get the words racists from??. I suggest you people print the real truth about us proud Nationalsts. I have read about you newspaper scum through the NUJ website, i despise traitors and you’re the worst kind.

  • Dave

    First we saw the politics show cut short Dereks interview, then we see this happening but we know why, Derek is going to have an excellent response in this by-election and he has the others running scared, its simple remove the truth-teller then the rest of them can get on with their pathetic lies and public foolery. Delph hang your head in shame!

  • Paula Wood

    I would firstly like to say how utterly disgusted I was to see the total lack of democracy in the village I grew up in.

    In the notice on the Delph Community Association website, it stated that the main candidates had been invited to speak. In that case, as 4th placed in last year’s election, the British National Party candidate, Mr Adams, should have been one of those invited. The Green Party were invited, yet they didn’t even stand a candidate last year. In fact, every candidate should have been invited, in a true democratic fashion.

    I spent my formative years in Delph and up until yesterday, remembered it fondly. I am saddened to see that beautiful little village turned into a fascist one. Where only those that you agree with are permitted to have a voice. Shame on you Delph.

  • aitch

    Democracy!! Discriminating against the British National Party.”The decision to exclude the BNP was taken by organisers from the Delph Community Association” WHAT GIVES THESE PEOPLE THE POWER TO DECIDE THIS ACTION?

  • Mary John

    I’m sure our forefathers would be disgusted by this sickening treatment of Derek Adams. They fought and died to keep this country free. The way Derek was forced out of his seat by Labour and the police should serve as a lesson to all of us. Do we, the public, want to be treated in this way if we dare speak different opinions to the ruling establishment? This incident was completely wrong and unfair - and just shows how far they will go to prevent good, honest, straightforward politics from being heard.

  • Sue

    The irony was probably wasted on these idiots who shouted “nazi and fascist” - who are the real fascists when a PPC is removed from a debating platform a week before a by-election. Democracy is well and truely dead when things like this can happen. Wake up England the end is nigh!!!!!!!

  • kenny jones

    What a national disgrace in ejecting a candidate.Or were the powers that be to scared in case Mr Adams mentioned the muslim grooming scandal.

  • Dan

    Where’s the democracy?

    Many downtrodden working class people in Oldham can relate to how the BNP candidate has been treated.

  • chris

    an absolute desgrace,is this what are forfathers fought and died for

  • Banning the only party that is actually any different from the others rather defeats the pretence of having a “debate”, doesn’t it?

    The BNP finished 4th here in the original election, beating UKIP, and the Greens didn’t even stand, so it has nothing to do with numbers of votes.

  • Maurice Oatley

    I’m sorry to say I don`t know Derek too well, but I had the pleasure of Speaking to him on Saturday and he came across as a very reasonable and pleasant man. What are you people afraid of.

  • Paul

    Interesting to note that this scandalous behaviour at a by election is absent from the press. What also I found interesting was that not one of the other candidates was prepared to denounce this hi jacking of our democracy. I may be wrong but if I was Mr Adams today I would be seeking legal advice for possible action against both the police and possibly those who sought his removal. This would probably be a breach of by election laws and also if this was in any way a publicly funded building.
    Yes there were fascists in Delph on this day but it was not Mr Adams.

  • DemocracyIsDeadLongLiveFascism

    Disgusting Fascists who stopped this man attending the Hustings.
    “Switch off the lights. Rend your hair. Don only white. It is time to go into mourning. An old and ailing relative — democracy, has died an inevitable death. Dead at barely 60 years old though the abuse it suffered during its short life span made it appear much older.

    Like the aunt who lingers on long after most of the family believe she is already dead, this week’s death was a quiet one, it was long expected, some would say even overdue. There was no shock, no sudden loss.

    Democracy in this country wasn’t overthrown by a dictator, nor shattered suddenly by the chaos of war and revolution. Instead it died a painful, slow death. Strangled by corruption, stifled by authoritarianism and finally snuffed out by the disinterest and apathy of the general public. And while it somehow lingered on despite being savaged by decades of war, riots, and attempted revolutions, this week we finally saw democracy die in the hearts and minds of voters.

  • David Bradley

    @Katy Boulton
    Of course the organisers of the hustings are well within their rights not to invite any candidate that they choose, however the idea of a hustings is to give the local electorate an opportunity to hear all the candidates political stances and what they would do for that local constituency if they were elected. Quite obviously you do not agree with this democratic process or you too would be angry that democracy is being denied, regardless of your own political affiliation.
    With regards to your comment “This is the totally unacceptable language of racism”, that is your own personal opinion and you are entitled to such. I would be happier to let other voters and constituents judge a candidate on face value and have the opportunity to question his/her politics in the democratic environment of a hustings (and therefore form their own opinions and not yours), than deny them that opportunity because someone such as yourself has decided that their politics are unacceptable. To me your understanding of democracy seems a little one sided, in fact it seems to be verging on the fascististic side where only your party or ones that agree with your politics are allowed to share a political platform.

  • Dear Readers, I was in email contact with Cllr Hulme who organised the event and he refused to invite 5 of the candidates included myself. I informed him that the meeting broke Electoral commission rules on hustings, the Millgate Arts Centre building recieves public funding and the meeting was advertised as an open event. The people of Delph should have been allowed to ask any questions to any of the candidates, in controlling the meeting like they did and only allowing on candidates who’s parties are already discredited with Scandles, deciet and lies was an insult to the people of Saddleworth and anti-democratic. Cllr Hulmes reasons were unjustified and when he lost the argument his emails reverted to All capitals and in bold ie, shouting in text language. Stephen Morris English Democrats

  • Russell

    I get the impression that the main parties are terrified of the BNP. At least they speak honestly and dont shy away from topics that the others are too scared to talk about. I remember when when Nick griffin was put on trial for high lighting the groomong of English girls. On trial for God sake, now he has been proved right, shouldnt the police and courts offer an apology to him.

  • Katy Boulton

    @David Bradley - I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree - obviously I see things rather differently. For the record I am not a member of a political party and I have voted for at least three different parties in my lifetime. It just seems ironic that a party like the BNP that is so non inclusive in its policies becomes so upset when it’s not included in something itself. Yes, of course free speech is important, as is the right to stand for election (which the BNP is exercising) but one incident in one little hustings really is not the end of the world.

  • David Bradley

    @ Stephen Morris.

    Although my political party is not the one that you represent I would like to thank you for both the time taken to question Cllr Hulme and to post your comment with his response. I am truly saddened that for one yourself and all PPCs were not invited to the hustings yesterday evening and that the BNP PPC was forcily ejected from what should have been an opportunity for the constituents of Delph to form their own opinions and judgement on all PPCs. One would hope that the people of Delph will be aware that they are being denied democracy and treated like children who are unable to make their own minds up na dhaving their freedom of choice interfered with.
    May I take this opportunity to wish you the best of luck on Thursday and thank you for fighting to keep the democratic process alive for the people of England.

  • Mike Smith

    Pauline, on a matter of fact, BNP is not the 4th largest party.
    In all recent elections it has come well behind the UK Independence Party.
    It may have beaten UKIP in a few isolated places as it’s support tends to congregate in a convenient sewer pit.
    As you can gather I hate the BNP as much as anyone - but they should be exposed and ridiculed not allowed to hide in dark corners.

  • Sarah Davies

    It is very sad that our democracy has died on the alter political correctness, multicultural zealotry and the fascism of the left. Everyone in that room who permitted a legitimate parliamentary candidate to be evicted in that manner embraced the totalitarian state we have become. It was shameful.

  • Dean Taylor

    Why were only five ‘approved’ candidates deemed acceptable to be questioned by the electorate at this public hustings? Surely this is giving a political advantage to those who shared the front table?

    The people who organised this are not democrats, that much is certain. Why has only the English Democrat candidate criticised this undemocratic action? Do the others support it?

  • DemocracyIsDeadLongLiveFascism

    Mike, everything you have just written is complete drivel and untrue except the part where you say “As you can gather I hate the BNP” which is probably true because you sound like you are full of hate.
    Thank you to Stephen Morris of the English Democratics for his response and explanation as he mentioned of the unjustified reasons given by Cllr Hulmes in their desertion of Democracy.

  • Andrew

    To exclude a popular candidate from the hustings would lead one to beleive that the powers that be will go to any lenght to deny the public the right to question all candidates on their policies. What are they trying to deny or hide from the public? The LibLabCon buffons continue to treat the Engish people like morons, the more they do stunts like this the more they feed the notion that they are the real facists/Nazis!

  • Dan

    UKIP are a bunch of money grabbing ex tory toffs - I can’t see them doing too well here.

  • Dan

    UKIP are nothing but false patriots. Remember when their former leader was exposed as a hypocrite for employing Eastern European bulders to work on his manor house.
    Don’t forget Farage bragging that he had made £million from the EU.

  • Cllr Hulme’s reason for only inviting 5 - “5 candidates have been invited - all those from parties with councillors sitting on Oldham Council - Green, Labour, Liberal Democrat and Conservative plus a sitting MEP from UKIP who is standing as a candidate. Clearly these are the candidates who could be in a position to assist us in achieving our objectives after the by-election is long gone.”

    The English Democrats have absolutely no history of campaigning on local issues like traffic in our area and as this meeting is first and foremost about local traffic issues it does not seem appropriate to invite yourselves to the meeting.”

    This was my response to his reason - “As I work in public Transport and as a Branch Official for Unite the Union in transport I attend various meetings in Greater Manchester over traffic issues, your comment that I have no history in campaigning on local issues like traffic is completely inaccurate.

    Why invite those party’s who already have Councillors on Oldham Council? those Councillors from those party’s are obviously not doing enough to address the issues in Delph and no proof that those invited will be any different.”

    I was also involved with the Manchester Against Road Tolls group who successfully campaigned against the congestion charge on Gt Manchester and I am on the National committee for light Rail with Unite the Union. This showed a complete lack of knowledge by Cllr Hulme of my credentials on campaigning on traffic issues and my experiences could have helped. I was the first to post on the site for the Uppermill Parking issues at Working with the Community Action Party(cross party working for the interests of residents) we successfully deseated a highprofile Councillor in Roger Jones who was going against the wishes of the people, people power prevailed.

  • Eddy

    @ Katy - you mention that the BNP are not inclusive. Well the High Court of this land disagrees with you when the BNP and Nick Griffin were vindicated when this so called non-inclusion issue was thrown out of court recently. If you are going to make statements then you really need to research the facts first.

    I find it saddening that instead of concentrating on issue that took place you find it more appropriate to launch an attack on the BNP when it is unfounded and quite incorrect.

  • David Bradley

    @ Katy Houston
    This was one “little” incident in one by election this month. Last May this happened in hustings all across Britain, not only this but threats of violence and criminal damage against anyone daring to host hustings and invite the British National Party. Thankfully on this occasion we seem to have a media outlet who are reporting the election in Oldham East and Saddleworth and in a fair and almost impartial manner and allowing comments to be published (thanks saddleworthnews). Bearing this in mind I hope you can appreciate why I and others feel strongly about yesterday evening and what occured.
    The BNP may have certain criteria with regards to membership and have policies that some may not agree with, this is one good reason why they and all PPCs should be invited to speak at hustings. It is not so much about the candidates having a fair crack of the whip, it about the electorate getting a fair chance to hear just what all political parties can offer to them. Labour, Liberal and Tory in particular are too fond of threatening to walk out of hustings or refuse to share a platform with other partys except themselves and ukip and the greens. Surely the fact that they behave in that way shows that they are less interested in democracy and more interested in their own agendas as career politicians. After all if they are so confident that they are correct in their assumptions that the BNP are racist and fascist, why do they feel the need to ban or threaten to walk out rather than let the electorate decide for themselves by questioning their prospective PPCs. I feel confident enough to say that it is because they are afraid to let adults be adults and engage in open debate, either that or it is a hatred instilled within them of anyone who thinks differently than they do. Interestingly I notice only one comment on here that mentions “Hate” and that is from someone who is anti-bnp, not one pro-bnp comment mentions hate (even though they are all angry about Mr Adams’s treatment.

  • Wow what a fantastic display of democracy in action by those ardent Lib/Lab/Con/UKIP democracts!

    Seriously the other candidates couldn’t care less about democracy, it’s a complete sham. This incident should be a wake up call to anyone who still has the misguided belief we live in a democracy. WE DO NOT LIVE IN A DEMOCRACY. We live in a one party state, that hides behind the Lib/Lab/Con facade.

    The reason the BNP is persecuted is not because of any truly “odious” policies, but in reality it is because we are the only true threat to the establishment.

    Imagine the news coverage if any of the old gang establishment parties were subjected to such actions?

    Democracy is for all, or it is not democracy.

    To witness the reality of fascist Britain click here:

  • [...] of this evening the Saddleworth News remains the only media outlet to cover [...]

  • What a joke. And here’s me thinking we all lived in a democracy - when quite obviously, we don’t!!

    If a candidate fulfills the criteria of representation then of course he/she should have been allowed to appear at this event - whether you agree with their politics or not.

    But then again, why am I not surprised? We in England live in a country which is UNIQUE in Europe and the Commonwealth - we’re the only ones without any national representation whatsoever - No Parliament or First Minister of our own. And the candidate who could have informed the good citizens of Saddleworth about this outrage (Steve Morris of the English Democrats) was also excluded - how convenient.

    For instance, the question about tuition fees - I’ll bet my house that NONE of those honest-john candidates deemed suitable to appear on the top table told the audience that it is ONLY English students who will be shelling out the full 9 grand a year fees. They are FREE for all Scottish students and cost only a third as much for Welsh students…. And don’t get me started on prescription charges or residential care costs for our old and infirm or OAPs having to sell off their homes to finance their care - all uniquely relevent to English people - all free or massively subsidised for the Scots and Welsh!

    ‘All in this together’? Yeah right, pull the other one! If you’re English, you’re in it right up to your neck!

    I’d love to know which pyscho-babbled control freak made the decision upon who was ‘acceptable’ to be on the top table and who was not.. Yet another Establishment lackey no doubt. ENGLISH PARLIAMENT NOW!!!!!

  • Ruby

    @ Alfred the Ok, See the comments above Councillor Ken Hulme made the decision on who was acceptable or not. Even if they asked to be on the panel they were refused as they didn’t match his critera.

  • Derek was very democratic; he acted like the Gentleman he’s known for. I’m a BNP Member and proud of Derek what an absolutely perfect man for the job of MP.

    This man has been persecuted time and again and he keeps coming back even stronger than before especially after the time the council took his pub off him because he was getting to popular with the community. Derek, you’re a true Englishman and Patriot and an absolute credit to the British National Party. God bless you my son.

  • Ruby - my question was rhetorical….

    The ‘criteria’ apparently selected by the councillor is hardly creditable.

    Let’s just bear in mind exactly why this election is happening at this time - courtesy of the dodgy shennanikins of the former Labour MP for the area…

    This campaign should therefore have been conducted bearing in mind the need for trust AND HONESTY be reistated to the hard pressed local population…. Excluding half the candidates to an apparently open public meeting because one single man has deemed it so, doesn’t really seem to me to be treating the voters with any kind of respect.

    I personally cannot fathom why this man thought that by empowering this act of exclusion, he would be furthering the democratic process. I hope he’s hanging his head in shame.

  • steve

    if you dont like the bnp you dont vote for them.
    what worries me is that other parties are now telling us who we are allowed to vote for, the bnp just offer us a choice thats all.
    we have nothing to fear from the small parties we can vote them in and out. its the old gang of 3 we cant seem to get rid of.
    i dont think this country can take much more of this left wing double standards.

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