London: Lutfur Rahman elected to Tower Hamlets despite corruption ban

Lutfur Rahman has returned to the role he lost seven years ago (Pictures: PA)

A former mayor who was forced to resign due to “corrupt and illegal practices” has been re-elected.

Lutfur Rahman of the Aspire party won in Tower Hamlets, London.

He had already been banned from running for mayor after a 2015 trial in an electoral court.

However, he never faced criminal charges.

During the trial, Electoral Commissioner Richard Mawrey said the evidence released revealed an “alarming situation” in Tower Hamlets.

As a result of the ruling, Mr Rahman was forced to resign as borough mayor and re-election was won by Labour’s John Biggs.

But yesterday Mr Rahman returned to his old role after beating incumbent Mr Biggs.

Mr Rahman, 56, urged residents of Tower Hamlets to ‘judge me on what we will do for you’.

Lutfur Rahman (left) was elected mayor of Tower Hamlets in London in the second round, beating Labour's incumbent John Biggs (right), in the Tower Hamlets election count in London.  Picture date: Friday May 6, 2022. PA Photo.  See PA story POLITICS Elections.  Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire

Lutfur Rahman (left) was elected mayor for the second time and beat John Biggs (Picture: PA)

He said: “I want to rebuild Tower Hamlets, I want to invest in our future and give our people a better future than we have had for the past seven years.

“Judge me and my administration on our record, what we delivered in the first term.

“The only borough in the country to have free home care. We offered the London Living Wage – the first in London – we offered the University Scholarship, the School Maintenance Allowance.

“Our promises for the future are even more progressive. Judge me on what we will do for you.

Lutfur Rahman speaks during the Tower Hamlets election count in London, after he was elected mayor of Tower Hamlets in the second round, beating Labour's incumbent John Biggs, in the local elections.  Picture date: Friday May 6, 2022. PA Photo.  See PA story POLITICS Elections.  Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire

Lutfur Rahman was removed from office as mayor of Tower Hamlets in 2015 (Picture: PA)

Mr Rahman won 40,804 votes while Mr Biggs got 33,487.

It plans to remove low traffic areas (LTNs) which have proven unpopular among some residents of Tower Hamlets.

The programs minimize the number of cars on the roads in an effort to stimulate alternative modes of transportation.

Mr Rahman said: “Our roads have been closed, blocked. It’s contributing to more CO2 in the borough when the idea was to reduce it.

“We’re going to review our roads, we’re going to consult and reopen our roads.”

The 56-year-old formed Aspire following the dissolution of the Tower Hamlets First party, following its ban in 2015.

It was the biggest political opposition to Tower Hamlets Council before the May 2018 election.

Mr Biggs described yesterday’s result as ‘decisive’.

He said: “I am proud of our many accomplishments, but it clearly reflects a desire for change.

“I worry about divisive community politics, however, the new mayor must seize the opportunity and deliver on the promises he has made.”

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