Hartlepool councillor speaks out in support of the Jeremy Corbyn

A town councillor has spoken out in support of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Friday, 1st July 2016, 5:35 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 6:41 pm
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn. Photo credit: Rick Findler/PA Wire
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn. Photo credit: Rick Findler/PA Wire

Coun Sylvia Tempest says it is a ‘disgrace’ the way some members of the party have been acting.

Coun Tempest was one of 240 local authority councillors, including Coun Lesley Hamilton, who represents the Victoria Ward, who signed an open letter on Labour List giving continued backing to the leader.

Sylvia Tempest.

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Mr Corbyn is facing a turbulent time after calls for him to step down and more than 50 members of the Labour Front Bench team resigning their posts.

But, Coun Tempest says she is firmly in Mr Corbyn’s camp.

She said: “As a member of Momentum I’m very much in support of Jeremy and that support has never wavered.

“I think this attempted coup is a disgrace and contemptible.”

Sylvia Tempest.

The open letter signed by Labour councillors, said: “We are a group of Labour Party councillors who are dismayed by the attempt by some within the Parliamentary Labour Party to oust our democratically elected leader, Jeremy Corbyn. Many of us were elected in May, where in spite of predictions of an electorial meltdown, we won our seats.

“Voters who had previously felt abandoned by the Labour Party returned to vote for us, returned as members and returned as campaigners.

“It would be utterly self-defeating for the people we represent if now, less than a year after Jeremy was elected on the single biggest mandate of any previous leader, he was forced from office. It is our view that the behaviour of some members of the Parliamentary Labour Party is totally self-indulgent and at odds with what the communities we represent need.

“We will risk losing all those new members and enthusiastic campaigners who joined us because Jeremy offered a vision of hope for the future.

“Our enemy is not Jeremy Corbyn - it is the Tory party and their plans to use the EU referendum as a fig leaf to inflict further cuts to the councils we represent.

“We hope that those MPs who have embarked on this indulgent course of action will reflect on their behaviour and turn their fire on the real enemy, the Tory Party.”

However, the following day on Labour List, more than 500 Labour councillors, although none from Hartlepool, signed an open public statement calling for Mr Corbyn to stand down.

They acknowledged the Labour leader’s four decades of public service, but said: “It has now become clear, however, that he is unable to command the confidence of the whole party.

“We urge Jeremy Corbyn to make way for the new leadership that our communities so desperately need.”