Lutfur Rahman: We take fraud claims seriously
By Lutfur Rahman
In recent weeks, a newspaper has published some lurid claims about alleged electoral fraud in Tower Hamlets. Let's be absolutely clear, we take any such claims very seriously indeed.
Following complaints of voter fraud in the 2010 General Election, investigating police failed to find a single case in our borough.
Council officers vigorously check any suspicious registrations and take people off the electoral register where deemed necessary.
We must be careful that we do not turn people off from the democratic process by avoiding some of the unsubstantiated claims that have appeared.
■ Since being elected mayor, I have stood shoulder to shoulder with leaders from all religious faiths, with the LGBT community and residents from all walks of life in our cosmopolitan borough in preventing far right extremists from the English Defence League from tramping their way through the East End as Mosley and his Black shirts did in the '30s.
Sadly, the racists feed from, and re-print, much of the dangerous nonsense that is being promulgated in some quarters that somehow my administration is "Sharia law fringed" or "Islamism-lite'".
My religion is a private matter.
But the kind of society I want to see mirrors that envisaged by Prince Charles, where no one particular religion has hegemony; instead we have a community of faiths.
■ Lutfur Rahman is Executive mayor, Tower Hamlets Council.