Opponents of Sadiq Khan vow to hold his ‘feet to the fire’ after increasing strength on London Assembly

·2-min read
 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

Opponents of Sadiq Khan on Monday vowed to hold his “feet to the fire” after increasing their strength on the London Assembly.

The Conservatives, Greens and Lib-Dems each picked up one seat on the 25-member scrutiny body charged with holding the mayor to account.

Labour lost one of its 12 seats following last Thursday’s elections but crucially retains a “blocking minority” of more than a third to prevent Mr Khan’s annual budget being overturned.

There were no changes in the 14 constituency seats on the last results in 2016, with Labour retaining nine seats – including marginal areas such as Barnet & Camden and Ealing & Hillingdon – and the Tories five, including increasing their slender majority 10-fold in Havering & Redbridge.

But Labour lost one of its three “Londonwide” seats, which are distributed on the basis of a complex proportional representation formula, while the Tories gained one, as did the Greens and Lib-Dems.

Previously two of these 11 Londonwide seats had been held by UKIP but its vote collapsed and it is no longer represented at City Hall.

This means 11 of the assembly’s seats are now held by Labour, nine by the Tories, three by the Greens and two by the Lib-Dems. A two-thirds majority is needed to force amendments to the mayor’s annual budget.

Susan Hall, leader of the GLA Conservatives, said: “We will stand up for everyone across this great city, hold Sadiq Khan’s feet to the fire, and fight for a safer, more affordable London.

“We wish the Mayor every success in finally getting a grip of soaring crime and the ever-rising cost of living in London. We will hold him to his promises to Londoners.”

Green mayoral candidate Sian Berry, who polled eight per cent in the mayoral race, the party’s best result, retained her seat on the assembly alongside two Green colleagues.

She said: “Londoners have sent a message loud and clear: London can be the greenest city in the world.”

Len Duvall, leader of the Labour group on the assembly, said: “We’ve really got to have our listening ears on going forward and regain the trust of some Londoners.

“We need the mayor to hit the ground running when it comes to London’s recovery, delivering jobs, and making London safer. It’ll be our job on the assembly to hold him to account and ensure those pledges are delivered upon.”

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