Fact checkers brand Tory Susan Hall's pay-per-mile claim 'deceptive'

Mayoral rivals Sadiq Khan and Susan Hall (ES Composite)
Mayoral rivals Sadiq Khan and Susan Hall (ES Composite)

Fact-checking campaigners have criticised Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall’s campaign as “deceptive” for a leaflet saying Sadiq Khan will bring in a pay-per-mile system for drivers.

Images of the leaflet, which claims the mayor wants to bring in “another tax on drivers”, were published online by Full Fact.

They said: “We’re concerned about these leaflets from the Conservative Party that some of our supporters are receiving through their doors. Deceptive campaign practices can mislead the public during elections - and that’s not on.”

The concept of charging people based on the distance they drive was mentioned in Mr Khan’s 2018 transport strategy, in which it is suggested as a potential replacement for existing schemes like the Ultra low emission zone (Ulez).

The mayor has repeatedly said he will not bring in such a scheme and last September insisted it would not be part of his mayoralty.

“As long as I am mayor, we’re not going to have pay-per-mile,” he told the London Assembly at a Mayor’s Question Time session.

A spokesperson for Ms Hall’s campaign said: “Sadiq Khan told us he had no plans to expand Ulez at the last election, then did it a few months later.

“Now after he spends £150m on the technology for pay-per-mile, he expects us to believe he won't bring it in? He is treating Londoners like fools. Susan is listening to Londoners, which is why she will scrap Sadiq Khan's Ulez expansion and pay-per-mile plans on day one of her Mayoralty.”

It comes after Ms Hall was criticised for posting an image on her social media channels depicting a Ulez roadside sign alongside an apparently photoshopped sign warning of a supposed ‘Pay-Per-Mile’ zone.

London Labour said: “This sign does not and will never exist. Sadiq has been clear — ruling out Pay Per Mile categorically while he is mayor. This is a photoshopped image and is a lie.”

Mr Khan remains on course to become the first London mayor to win three successive terms of office according to polls ahead of election day on May 2.

A poll published last week found the Labour mayor is backed by 44 per cent of respondents with his Tory rival on 26 per cent.