Ealing and Northfield

Unbelievable: Sahota lying to St Mark’s parents in emails

Buy 42 for St Mark's

Parents at St Mark’s primary school in Hanwell are campaigning to stop their school being knocked about by a badly thought out expansion scheme and instead build on adjacent land at 42 Lower Boston Road.

I have seen emails between London Assembly Member Onkar Sahota and a parent at St Mark’s Primary School in Hanwell regarding his ownership of adjacent land at 42 Lower Boston Road. The site is already part of the school plot and purchase of the land would make it much easier to expand the school. Instead the council is proposing to knock the original, locally-listed building about and rob the children of play space.

Sahota owns the land which was certainly known to all the Ealing councillors and senior officers back in November 2013 when the council was originally trying to buy the land from Sahota, see my blog dating back to then.

Unbelievably, in recent correspondence Sahota has been misleading about his ownership of the land. I say misleading but to tell such a direct untruth is to lie. According to Land Registry Sahota owns the land personally.

Land Registry 42 Lower Boston Road

Instead of just admitting as much to St Mark’s parents Sahota has said:

Thank you for your email and for the opportunity to clear up any misunderstandings.

I write as a local GP and can confirm that the site you refer to was indeed purchased by the Family Health Practices Group (FHPG) a number of years ago. The plan was for the site to build a new community medical centre, and plans were submitted and approved by the Council for this purpose. Unfortunately, primarily as a result of the financial crisis which hit in 2008, funding for the project was delayed and ultimately fell through, however the ambition to develop a new medical centre remains.

Family Health Practices Group does appreciate that the ability to deliver a new medical centre is no longer as assured given the current financial climate. For that reason we are also currently in conversation with the Council about alternative uses for the site including for school expansion.

On a day to day basis I and my colleagues at the Family Health Practices Group have little to do with the management of this site and have professional advisors to do this on our behalf. I would however reiterate that in principle the Family Health Practices Group is not opposed to the idea of disposing of this site so it can be used to provide additional educational space. Either way, our intention is and always has been that this site is used for the provision of a community resource, whether that is educational or medical.

I hope that you will understand that it is important for me to keep my two roles, as a London Assembly Member, and as a GP at Family Health Practices Group, separate. If you have any more questions about this matter please write to me at the Family Health Practices Group, 322 Greenford Avenue, Hanwell, London, W7 3AH.

In these five paragraphs Sahota tells two direct lies and is probably telling a third.

  • Lie 1: The site was not purchased by FHPG. It was purchased by Sahota himself on 12th May 2006 for £730K according to Land Registry. FHPG is not a legal entity so therefore could not own a property. The operating company that Sahota operates his doctors’ surgeries from is called Healthcare 360 Limited. FHPG is merely a brand or trading name of Healthcare 360 Limited.
  • Lie 2: When Sahota uses the first person plural and says: “I and my colleagues at the Family Health Practices Group” he is trying to elide the fact that he is the sole decision maker. Healthcare 360 Limited is 100% owned by Onkar Sahota. The site is owned by him.
  • Lie 3: According to these estate agents particulars Sahota tried to market the site for “alternative uses” at the end of May 2014. So unless this was just an artifact from an attempt at marketing the site that never went public Sahota’s talk of “provision of a community resource” is similarly misleading.

Why is Sahota at pains to obfuscate the commercial arrangements under which he does business? Sahota is sole owner and sole decision maker with regard to this site. No-one else needs to be involved in this decision. Indeed no-one else can be. If this site does not end up in community use there is only one person to blame. Sahota says he wants “to clear up any misunderstandings”. You can’t clear up a “misunderstanding” by lying.

Ealing and Northfield

Ealing MP hanging out with revolutionary socialists

With an active Momentum group in Ealing, one of 20 in London, you can see how Ealing MP Rupa Huq might feel the need to run with the revolutionary socialist types who are currently trying to take over the Labour party and stop it being in government until mid century at least.

On Saturday I was given this leaflet which I have marked up to show who Huq is speaking with, click to enlarge.

Keeping Huq company

Who is Huq speaking with?

With the rise of Momentum and the 7th tiniest majority in Parliament you can see how Huq has to keep the loony left onside so she gets reselected without scaring her voters who will most likely not be impressed with her open borders promoting revolutionary socialist chums.

Ealing and Northfield

Ealing MP to speak at open borders meeting

Rally against racism

On Saturday I was given this leaflet on Ealing Broadway by a grey haired bloke with a pony tail – you know the look. Anti-racism is an impeccable cause but you can stand against racism without standing with a bunch of revolutionary socialists. These people have a much narrower agenda, in fact they spell it out on their facebook site:

Over the last 2 years Stand Up To Racism has played a pivotal role against police racism, organising solidarity for refugees and for the government to open the borders.

These people literally think that by prising open the UK’s borders that this will lead to a revolution in the UK and then on to a socialist utopia. They really do.

What on Earth is Rupa Huq doing speaking at this meeting? Last year she stood on Labour’s general election manifesto which offered “stronger borders” and the recruitment of an extra 1,000 borders staff (page 49 and 50 reproduced below).

Labour's manifesto on border controls

Is Huq going to go to the meeting and argue for stronger borders or has she changed her mind? Most likely she merely hopes to appease the Momentum crowd she will need to have onside to get reselected.

Ealing and Northfield

You can draw a straight line from Labour’s John McDonnell to Ealing looter Syed Bokhari

Seba ElectronicsToday the Daily Mail identified Calais Jungle activist Syed Bokhari as being one of the thugs that looted the Seba Electronics store on the Uxbridge Road in West Ealing during the riots in 2011.

Bokhari’s leftwing activist history in Ealing goes back to 2010 when he appeared as a spokesman for Right to Work Campaign at an Ealing public meeting hosted by the Anti Academies Alliance at Acton High School.

ealing public meeting

It was all a bit incestuous as the Anti Academies Alliance was essentially a Socialist Workers Party front organisation and so was the Right to Work Campaign. You all know Bob Crow and Eve Turner is another SWP connected leftist.

God only knows what Ealing councillor Daniel Crawford was doing there. Dan is more of a centrist Labour man. Blairite even. He was probably just being a bit naive as a new councillor finding his feet.

Anyway Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell chaired the now defunct Right to Work Campaign which was founded in 2010 according to the Guardian. McDonnell encourages people to break the law so the looting was just what the boss wanted.

Ealing and Northfield

Stop and Shop plans abandoned? No, just deferred

It seems to me more like Labour’s man in charge of parking, Cllr Bassam Mahfouz, has made a tactical retreat rather than abandoning his plans to make Stop and Shop parking in the borough complicated and expensive. used the words “abandon” and “scrapped” in their piece today but if you read down to the bottom you will see that Mahfouz is waffling on about a review and that “Findings from the review will start to be implemented towards the end of the year.”

If I was a local trader I would keep that petition going.

Of course, like most things, it is about money. It was decided at an Ealing Council Cabinet on 24th November 2015 that the council would raise an extra £75K by making life more awkward for shoppers (go to Item 7, Appendix 1, line P03). Click image below to enlarge.

Parking proposals

It is hard for the layman to work out that when the council says:

Introduction of free new parking permits giving residents 30 minutes to ‘park and shop’ in dedicated bays in high street locations, supporting local businesses

that this means we are going to charge you more. It is this kind of murky crap that gives councils a bad name.

I suspect “saving” £140K (ie charging £140K more) for suspensions and dispensations is going to cause even more eye watering increases for a smaller group of people.

Ealing and Northfield

Labour activist tries to cover up Southall MP’s Cape Town jolly

Ian Kingston letter to Gazette 8-1-2016

I shouldn’t have been surprised to see this misleading letter in the Gazette today. I guess someone in the Ealing Labour party saw my blog piece on Sharma’s recent trip to Cape Town and got one of their little helpers to drop a letter to the Gazette.

Ian KingstonThe writer, a local Labour activist called Ian Kingston, has not told Gazette readers the complete story of Southall MP Virendra Sharma’s absence from the Syria vote in Parliament on 2nd December.

When Kingston says that Sharma was “abroad” he means Sharma was in Cape Town, South Africa attending a Global TB Summit that ended on 30th November.

Parliament was sitting at the time of the Syria vote on December 2nd so you might have thought that Sharma would have planned to be back in the UK as soon as possible to do the job he is paid to do. The comparison with Conservative MP Nick Herbert who was Co-Chair of the event in Cape Town but managed to get back for the vote does not show Sharma in a good light.

Obviously Cape Town is a lovely place and it must have been tempting to add a few days on to his trip. Of course it would have cost a lot of money to change his flight to get back in time, money that Sharma was not prepared to spend out of his own pocket clearly. The reason Sharma didn’t turn up for the Syria vote is because he planned a sneaky holiday when he should have been working. The Syria vote caught him out otherwise no-one would have noticed. Shame on Ian Kingston and Ealing Labour for trying to hide the facts.

Ealing and Northfield

The leftwing extremists who dominate Ealing’s union scene

Tonight Acton Labour councillor Mik Sabiers seemed pleased that the council had passed a motion decrying the government’s trade union bill and seeking “to continue its own locally agreed industrial relations strategy and good relations with our workforce and their representatives”.

Although Sabiers himself claims to not have anything to do with the Socialist Workers Party the union activists in Ealing he aligns himself with certainly do.

Stefan SimmsI have written about the SWP cell that runs Ealing NUT before. The current incumbent is Stefan Simms who made his name complaining about military recruitment: TES, Daily Mail. He said:

I would be gutted after years of putting time and professional effort into the students I teach, helping their education and preparing them for adult life, to find out that some have said ‘I decided to join the Army’.

Of course as a fulltime officer of the NUT on facility time Simms does precious little teaching nowadays.

New and Turner

The Ealing Trades Union Council (ETUC) is run by a double act.

Oliver New (right, holding megaphone), President of ETUC, helped to organise the spitting mob that attended the Conservative Party conference this year. He is also active in Left Unity, which fielded candidates against Labour at the last election. He is their trade union officer. His election manifesto said (among other things):

Last year UK workers had twice as many days on strike as the year before.

Although most union members and workers are understandably desperate to see the defeat of the current Government, we need to continue to highlight the relationship between Labour and big business, the consequent incapability of Labour to support workers’ struggles and the need to build a left alternative.

I come from South Wales and now live in Southall, West London, where I have been at the heart of many community campaigns. I’m proud to chair Ealing Trades Council, with its history of militant community organising.

After being blacklisted in engineering I became a Tube Driver and RMT activist. I’ve helped organise many disputes and strikes on London Underground as well as supporting the self organisation and struggles of cleaners and other contracted workers. I have been a Rep and both Chair and Secretary of the RMT London Transport Region and a member of the national RMT Executive.

The secretary of Ealing Trades Union Council is Eve Turner (left, speaking into microphone). She has stood as a member of the Left Unity national council. Her election address stated:

I am really excited to be part of Left Unity and want to do everything I can to help to build it as a political alternative to Labour, which has consistently betrayed the working class, the poor and the oppressed.

I am not a member of any other parties or any tendency but have been in other left groups in the past. I even had the dubious pleasure of being Chair of our local Constituency Labour Party for a number of years and was involved in elections both for Labour and for socialist and community campaigns.

I am currently Secretary of Ealing Trades Council which we have established as a militant community campaigning organisation and I’m convenor of our local Save our NHS campaign fighting to save our local hospitals from being trashed.

I live in Southall. I am Membership Secretary of West London Left Unity and was recently elected to represent my branch on the London Regional Committee.

Back in 2001 both New and Turner were part of the Socialist Alliance, essentially a SWP project that predated their attempt to use the Respect Party as a tool to further their agenda.

Anyway, these are some of the unionists that the Ealing Labour party think they need to keep onside.

Ealing and Northfield

Was Sharma totally honest about Cape Town trip?

I did a piece on Southall MP Virendra Sharma’s trip to Cape Town yesterday. I got it wrong. I assumed that he had attended the 46th Union World Conference on Lung Health which ran from 2nd to 6th December last week. The Syria vote was on 2nd December and Sharma had told his constituents in an email that he couldn’t attened due to being in South Africa.

I have now been sent a copy of Sharma’s email. He says:

The date of the debate has only just been set, and it is agreed for the 2nd December. For many months I have been booked to travel to South Africa from the 28th November to the 3rd December to attend the ‘Global TB Summit’ in Cape Town. At this meeting I will be part of an international group of nearly 60 countries working to combat Global TB a disease which affects millions of the most vulnerable. I am unable to renege on my commitment to the ‘Global TB Caucus’ to attend this event, and indeed it would be impossible for me to return to the UK to vote without serious financial cost to the charity.

Nick Hebert in SA

It seems that Sharma was in fact at an event for politicians called the Global TB Summit. Fair enough. Only that event was due to run from 28th to 30th November. In other words it ended on Monday and it would have been straightforward to get back to vote on Wednesday if he had wanted to – there are frequent overnight flights from SA to London. In fact the chairman of the Global TB Summit event was Conservative MP Nick Herbert who managed to get back and vote. Whilst Herbert makes frequent refernces to his TB work and South Africa trip on Twitter, Sharma says nothing.

So was Sharma working or simply not prepared to give up a planned post conference minibreak in Cape Town whilst Parliament was sitting? Is he back yet? Will he tell us?

Ealing and Northfield

What was Southall MP Sharma doing in Cape Town last week?

Greg-Lumley Cape Town

Last week when Southall MP Virendra Sharma was being paid to turn up and vote in our Parliament he was off on a jolly in Cape Town.

I say jolly because I cannot imagine how he was doing anything useful at the 46th Union World Conference on Lung Health. The conference involved a “five-day scientific programme” from 2nd to 6th December. I know that Sharma does have an interest in TB which affects his constituency more than most but does he really need to be at a scientific conference that just happens to be in Cape Town? Was there a political/governmental stream to the conference? MPs are often very bright and hardworking but are scientific conferences the place where they are most effective? Especially when Parliament is sitting – it is not as if there are not enough recesses (holidays to you and I).

He had to admit to being absent to Ealing Today as the Syria vote was so high profile but would he have talked about it otherwise? He uses Twitter, facebook (not updated since March 30th) and his own website (latest story 9th November) but all three fail to explain what important work he was doing in Cape Town that caused him to be absent from his day job. Maybe he will explain himself? Don’t hold your breath waiting for accountability from this man.

Ealing and Northfield National politics

How will Ealing’s three Labour MPs vote today?

Today will see a debate and vote on a motion on extending airstrikes to Syria against ISIL. How will Ealing’s three Labour MPs vote today? I went looking for clues online.

Rupa Huq, Ealing Central and Acton has a website but it is out of date and very thinly populated. There is one piece from 15th November asnd then the next piece is dated 21st July. Although it has a picture of her with someone else’s bicycle it makes no reference to Syria.

On facebook and Twitter Huq reports that she has come out against. The fact that Huq has “pinned” this tweet so that it stays at the top of her page indicates that she wants people to know where she stands.

Been on BBC News 24 to voice my opposition to the UK bombing Syria – caption slightly unfortunate though!

Posted by Dr Rupa Huq for Ealing Central and Acton on Saturday, November 28, 2015

At least Huq is being clear. She is, ultimately, an intellectual, and I am sure she can find lots of reasons for doing nothing and back them up with high minded arguments. Thankfully intellectuals do not rule us, otherwise we would be slaves.

Sharma on Daesh

Apart from showing how right on he is by using the Arabic version of ISIL Virendra Sharma has not said anything beyond that Paris was bad. Otherwise he is silent. Nothing appears online to give you any clue as to what he thinks. As he is usually a Labour loyalist I guess he will follow Corbyn’s line although he might be confused currently as to what a Labour loyalist should do. We won’t get anything but banalities from Sharma if he does make any kind of statement.

Stephen Pound is equally inscrutable as Sharma on this subject. The guy is totally capable of sounding off but he too often uses his great skills for comic effect only. His website says nothing about Syria and he doesn’t do the social media stuff. Pound probably hasn’t got much to lose if he does vote against Corbyn’s line – let’s see if he has it in him. Otherwise we will have three Noes I suspect.