The Enquirer has received the email below from Lutfur Rahman. This is published unedited with our response below.

Email from Lutfur Rahman

Mark,

I wish to provide the following statement in response to your recent articles.

I don’t think I was approached for comment (and if I was I’m sorry I didn’t get the message) but if I had been I would have told you this:

“Mr Shuker is a care worker who has struggled on low pay to support elderly and vulnerable people throughout the pandemic. He expressed an opinion on the need for essential workers to organise and make their voices heard.

“To drag a key worker into a political row with no right of reply is unfair and unreasonable.

“If I had any inkling that any campaigner on any side intended to abuse a position of trust I would report it instantly.”

I hope this can be included in your articles on this subject.

Best wishes,
Lutfur

Response by Mark Baynes, editor East End Enquirer

Dear Lutfur

Thanks very much for getting in touch.

The reason we did not attempt to contact you is because the Aspire Party is very good at keeping a very low profile when required to the point of not being contactable. Ever.

On previous occasions we have sent messages for someone to contact us for comment via Twitter but to no avail.

However now that we have your email you can be sure that we will contact you in future. There again we have the email of the Tower Hamlets Council press office and they just ignore us, usually because of politically expediency. Let’s hope you can do better.

As to the main contents of your email please do not try and bullshit us, and by extension the residents of Tower Hamlets, by attempting to distort what happened at that meeting.

You seem to forget that you have a reputation for lying when it suits you which was proven in the High Court.

Maybe it is time to stop?

We are sure Mr Shuker is a very hard worker but to say that his comments – expressed in Sylheti to try and avoid his words being circulated widely – were ‘an opinion on the need for essential workers to organise and make their voices heard’ is at best disingenuous and at worst a bare-faced lie.

Mr Shuker, at his own volition or through prompting by a politician, clearly said that care workers should make use of their position of trust to collect (harvest) votes for you.

He uses the word ‘collect’ several times. Was this a reference to collecting their postal votes do you think? Would those postal votes be completed when collected do you think? Or would it have been down to someone else to complete them?

Mr Shuker’s words in Sylheti have now been translated several times by different people into English and there is no mistake as to what he was saying. Check out the speech by Lord Hayward if you want.

“To drag a key worker into a political row with no right of reply is unfair and unreasonable.”

You (conveniently) miss the point which is that it is primarily your behaviour which is at issue here. I assume that after your time in court during the electoral petition that your knowledge of electoral law is more informed than his?

“If I had any inkling that any campaigner on any side intended to abuse a position of trust I would report it instantly.”

Good for you. So have you reported Mr Shuker to the authorities?

Come to think of it have you reported yourself to the authorities?

Because after Mr Shuker finishes speaking you can be seen smiling and applauding him.

Which would lead any reasonable person to conclude that you are endorsing his comments wholeheartedly.

Correct? If there is another explanation let us know.

“I hope this can be included in your articles on this subject.”

Not a problem.

Yours

Mark Baynes

The East End Enquirer is free to read. If you could find your way to donating some cash to keep Moley’s investigations going that would be very good indeed ‘cos we need a new desk chair!

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