Monday, 7 May 2018

Shadow of Rochdale's Danczuk Dynasty survives

by Brian Bamford
ALMOST four years ago on the 3rd, June 2014, BBC News announced:
'Rochdale Council is set to have a new leader after a coup in the ruling Labour group.  Colin Lambert was unseated by former leader Richard Farnell at a Labour group meeting on Monday evening.

That brought a tweet from the then Rochdale Labour MP, Simon Danczuk:
'Good news for Rochdale that Richard Farnell is to be new council leader, commiserations to outgoing Councillor Colin Lambert.'

This 'good news for Rochdale' was to turn into sour milk as a bumbling Richard Farnell squirmed under cross-examination in the hot seat of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse in 2017.

In 2014, BBC Radio Manchester claimed there had been a long term plan to replace Colin Lambert as leader of the Rochdale Council following the local elections of that year.

At that time it seemed that the now disgraced Councillor Farnell was being pushed by the Danczuk mafia within the Rochdale Labour Party to take over the leadership almost against his will.  Sources inside the party suggested Farnell even then foresaw his own future downfall, and was in a state of distress at the thought of taking over at the top.

Councillor Farnell, we now know is suspended and in some disgrace, though still in receipt of his council stipend.  His close colleague and pal Councillor Allen Brett replaced him in December 2017.

Coucillor Brett was Simon Danczuk's Parliamentary agent and he is reputed to have praised Mr Danczuk in the following terms:
'Simon is someone with the qualities and skills to represent Rochdale in Parliament very well indeed.  He’s got a breadth of experience in the trade union movement and in business.  He’s a former councillor and because of his own upbringing, understands how difficult life can be for people and families in Rochdale.  I’m looking forward to working with him.'

Thus, yesterday's news that Councillor Allen Brett had been re-elected as the Leader of the local Labour Party and hence the Leader of Rochdale Borough Council, will be cause for concern for a large section of the party.  The day before Brett's re-election (6th, May) in a letter on Rochdale ONLINE, over a hundred  'grassroots members of the local Labour Party' from 18 wards in the borough of Rochdale, urged local councillors to vote for Councillor Jacqui Beswick as Labour Group leader which they claimed 'will give the fresh leadership to take the borough forward.'

Instead, the Rochdale Labour Party has just gone politically backwards.


No comments: