24 April 2015

Politicians face religious bullying ban to stop another Tower Hamlets

Laws banning politicians from using religion to bully voters will be toughened in a bid to prevent another scandal like Tower Hamlets, it emerged today.

Cabinet minister Eric Pickles is instructing officials to redraft legislation after the courts yesterday deposed Lutfur Rahman as mayor and found he had used religion to push Muslims into backing him. Mr Pickles said voters must never be told they will “burn in hell” if they fail to back a candidate.

It came as Scotland Yard was expected to launch a criminal inquiry into the ousted mayor after he was found guilty of corruption and rigging his election.

Senior officers are urgently examining the 200-page report by Election Commissioner Richard Mawrey after he found the independent mayor oversaw corrupt and illegal practices when he was re-elected last year. [Evening Standard] Read more