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Wednesday 6th
posted by Lamiat Sabin in Britain

FOUR more Labour councillors in Haringey have quit after members selected Momentum candidates to block the London borough’s council’s plans to sell off social housing to a developer.

Three “centrist” councillors representing the Crouch End ward have stepped down. In a joint statement, Jason Arthur, Natan Doron and Sarah Elliott blamed a “factional and poisonous” climate of “anger, cynicism and distrust.”

A fourth councillor, James Patterson, from the neighbouring Alexandra ward, also announced his decision to step down. He accused Momentum of using the Haringey Development Vehicle (HDV) as a “Trojan horse.”

The bitter dispute between right-wing and left-wing party members stems from the council’s decision to set up the HDV, transferring £2 billion of council assets to a 50-50 partnership with Australian developer Lendlease.

Of the 28 Labour councillors who support the HDV, 22 have been deselected or retired. Just six have been reselected.

Of the 21 Labour councillors who oppose the HDV, one has retired and 20 have been reselected.

The current balance of selected candidates is 41-7 against the HDV, with nine candidates still to be selected, according to a statement released yesterday by Paul Burnham, secretary of Haringey branch of Defend Council Housing.

At a meeting on Monday, he added, council leader Claire Kober had pushed for approval to demolish the Love Lane estate and sell the land to Lendlease.

Labour councillors opposing the plan left the chamber, feeling “too disgusted to support a scheme with the loss of 67 council homes, designed to push up house prices and rents, making the area unaffordable for local people,” Mr Burnham said.

Only 27 out of 49 Labour councillors voted for the demolition of Love Lane.

“The authority of council leader Claire Kober is disintegrating. Her cabinet has no mandate for estate demolitions or proceeding with the HDV,” Mr Burnham also said.