Statement from the General Secretary of BFAWU following his resintatement by the Labour Party

Following a short hearing with officials of the  Labour Party South East, I have received notification that I have had my suspension lifted and informed that I will be able to participate normally in Labour Party business.

I have to say I am absolutely delighted that my appeal has been upheld and that I can continue to campaign both inside and outside the party for the return of Jeremy Corbyn as our leader.

The assistance that I have had has been invaluable as has the support from thousands of rank and file members. My sincere thanks to my lawyer, Martin Howe who has given professional guidance and advice from the start and invaluable assistance in having this decision overturned.

Finally, I thank my own union, the Bakers Food & Allied Workers Union for their unstinting support and campaign for my reinstatement.

Now we need to ensure that the thousands of members who have been suspended have their membership reinstated and the opportunity to exercise their democratic right and to vote in the leadership election.

Ronnie Draper
General Secretary

In a statement from Ronnie’s solicitor, Martin Howe of Howe & Co Solicitors, said:

“Ronnie, and thousands of other Labour Party members, should never have been suspended for using robust language in the context of the white hot heat of political debate. Free speech is the lifeblood of democracy and the Labour Party should have no part in banning words without taking  context into account . Context is everything.  We need fair and even-handed investigations of genuine grievances. The   blanket use of suspension before investigation – preventing members from attending meetings, theAnnual Conference and, most importantly, from voting in the leadership election – has no place in a modern political party that proudly brought the Human Rights Act to our statute books and where fairness and equality are at the heart of the movement.  I call on the Party immediately to lift the suspensions of all other members who have also exercised their right to express robust political speech so that we can have a truly democratic leadership election that reflects the will of the whole membership.”