Alibor Choudhury has been appointed to the role of Deputy Head of the Mayor’s Office and Amy Jackson has been appointed as Head of the Mayor’s Office.
The appointment of Alibor Choudhury comes as no surprise as, after several years completely off the radar he has been seen at various Aspire Party meetings during the election and the only question was what role he would be given by the Mayor.
Mr Choudhury is not an elected councillor in this administration.
During Lutfur Rahman’s first administration Cllr Alibor Choudhury’s job title was Cabinet Member for Resources but in reality he ran Tower Hamlets and was described by Justice Mawrey in his Electoral Petition judgements as Lutfur Rahman’s ‘hatchet-man’.
You can see some of the references to Mr. Choudhury in the extract from Justice Mawrey’s judgement below. You can get the full transcript here.
At the conclusion of the election petition Lutfur Rahman and Alibor Choudhury were the only two elected councillors found to be personally guilty of corrupt and illegal practices and was also disqualified from holding office as was Lutfur Rahman.
249 Mr Rahman’s right-hand man is and has for some time been Mr Alibor Choudhury who serves as the cabinet member for resources, in effect the Borough’s Chancellor of the Exchequer. He is also, as we shall see, the Treasurer (indeed the only officer apart from Mr Rahman himself) of the political party THF. Mr Rahman’s relationship with Mr Choudhury came out quite clearly in the course of the lengthy period during which both men gave evidence.
250 I shall consider Mr Rahman as witness at a later stage but it seems wise to examine Mr Choudhury at this stage before looking at his various rôles. Mr Choudhury was a very unsatisfactory witness. He was arrogant, indeed cocky, and did not hesitate to tell bare-faced lies in the smug assurance that the mere lawyers listening him would not have the wit to see through them. He also came over as an immature man who possessed, and did not shrink from expressing, outrageous views. The court was told that he had, in his youth, been convicted of some criminal offence but what it was was never revealed and it played no part in the case. In making the assessment of Mr Choudhury’s character and credibility the court had more than sufficient material to go on without dredging back into his past: his supposed conviction was disregarded.
251 In describing Mr Choudhury as Mr Rahman’s right-hand man, perhaps the slang term ‘hatchet-man’ would be more appropriate. The modus operandi of the two men would be that Mr Rahman would retain a statesmanlike posture, making sure that he always said the right thing – particularly in castigating electoral malpractice – while what might be called ‘the dirty work’ was done by Mr Choudhury. This was especially apparent in the campaign against Mr Biggs which will be discussed below, in which, on the surface at least, Mr Choudhury would be responsible for the attempted character-assassination of Mr Biggs while Mr Rahman claimed to have had no input into – indeed, on occasion, not even to have read – the press releases put out in his name.
252 As has been indicated earlier in this judgment, however, electoral law does not permit the candidate to sit back, smiling benignly, while his associates get on with electoral malpractices in order to procure his election. The candidate is liable for the actions of his agents, especially his election agent. Mr Choudhury was Mr Rahman’s official election agent.
One of this author’s abiding memories from the 2014 Mayoral election campaign is of sitting in the Troxy during the count and watching Alibor Choudhury and his team leaving the count floor.
What neither I or anyone else realised at the time was that Alibor Choudhury was just putting the finishing touches to what must be the most extensive and sophisticated electoral fraud in UK political history.
That the result of his hard work was overturned by Justice Mawrey at the end of the electoral petition does not in any way reduce the sheer audacity of the fraud and that nobody saw it happening literally underneath our noses.
One aspect of Alibor Choudhury returning to power is the extent to which he is engaged with Islamic Forum Europe or whatever they are calling themselves this week.
More of that another time.
Welcome back Alibor, just like old times.