A suspended London Labour official is taking the party to court, accusing it of mishandling an Islamophobia complaint he submitted.
Syed Siddiqi, the Labour Ilford South secretary and a local Momentum coordinator, made an official complaint about anti-Muslim abuse from a fellow Labour member. 5Pillars has heard a recording of the incident and can confirm that it contains clear Islamophobic rhetoric.
After Labour received the complaint it immediately put the alleged perpetrator under investigation and his membership was suspended until further notice. However, soon afterwards his membership was re-instated without explanation.
This was followed by a counter-investigation into Siddiqi on the grounds of him having a “detrimental affect” on the local Ilford Labour party. Subsequently, and despite him having a letter of support from his local party, Siddiqi was suspended from the party three months ago with no specific allegations or evidence put against him.
With councillor nominations coming up, Mr Siddiqi will not be able to put himself forward because of his suspension.
“How my case has been handled by London Labour goes totally against Shami Chakribathi’s report into hate crime,” Syed Siddiqi told 5Pillars. “Suspending members must be done with notification of specific allegations and with evidence. That has not happened and is against natural justice.
“In addition, the re-instatement of my abuser as a member, after clear evidence of Islamophobic abuse is outrageous and despicable, especially in light of my suspension.
“I have full support by my local party but it appears Labour London are not taking their voices into account either. In addition, the re-instatement of my abuser as a member after clear evidence of Islamophobic abuse is outrageous and despicable, especially in light of my suspension.”
Commenting on the case MPACUK spokesperson Imran Shah, said: “If Labour’s compliance department are intentionally covering for the abuser, it sends an awful message to British Muslims that the Labour party regard the hate Muslims face everyday as unimportant.
“This is a scandal and a cover up at the heart of the biggest political party in the UK. If their compliance department is not ready to treat this case justly, the party should intervene to ensure it is.”
5Pillars has contacted the Labour Party about Mr Siddiqi’s case but has yet to receive a response.