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Witch-hunt: Jennie Formby’s figures on anti-Semitism in the Labour Party make about as much sense as some of the accusations against innocent party members.

Why are people welcoming the diabolical figures on Labour anti-Semitism provided to Labour MPs by Jennie Formby a week after she said she doesn’t answer to those people?

It seems to this victim of Labour’s policy on anti-Semitism that the most telling information lies in what Ms Formby did not report.

For example:

Her report refers to cases between April 2018 and January this year; why not to all cases, including the backlog left behind by former general secretary Ian McNicol? That’s what the Parliamentary Labour Party’s motion was about, after all – “a backlog of antisemitism cases”.

She says that during the period to which she refers, 211 party members were issued with a “Notice of Investigation” and 96 had their membership suspended immediately, but only 96 cases have been decided by the NEC disputes panel(s). What is happening with the other 211, considering Ms Formby said last week that the backlog of cases had been cleared?

Of the 96, six members’ cases were referred “for further investigation”. So these cases may be added to the uncleared backlog.

A further 42 were referred to the National Constitutional Committee, which has made only 18 decisions. This means another 24 cases may be added to the number outstanding.

That makes a total of 241 cases not cleared, out of 673 accusations, roughly one-third of the total. That’s a considerable number.

But Ms Formby said the backlog had been cleared: “Reforms have enabled us to clear all of the previously outstanding antisemitism cases from the investigation and disputes panel stages of the process.”

Oh, but when she referred to the backlog of cases, she meant those left behind by the previous general secretary Iain McNicol, didn’t she?

Was Marc Wadsworth’s case included among the expulsions listed here? He was expelled in April last year, after all.

What about my own case, from November?

Both were part of the backlog left behind by Mr McNicol. If they were part of Ms Formby’s statistics, then her figures are inaccurate.

Both expulsions were also based on lies.

And both form the basis of potential court action against the Labour Party, meaning that – if they are included among the expulsions listed by Ms Formby – she was doubly wrong to do so; the outcome of these cases remains in doubt and it is misleading not to mention this.

For that matter, why not apply the questions around my case to all the others? In how many of them were Labour’s own rules on anti-Semitism actually honoured?

For example, in my case an incident in which I referred – entirely correctly – to a conspiracy involving former Israeli Embassy officer Shai Masot was deliberately misrepresented as perpetuating the anti-Semitic stereotype of the “global Jewish conspiracy”.

I refuted the claim thoroughly in my statement of defence to the NCC panel that heard my case, and no attempt was made to suggest that my argument was not persuasive.

The NCC panel simply ignored all the evidence and decided to call me guilty anyway.

Is that Labour Party justice?

Even the cases that were dismissed have left questions to be answered.

Ms Formby’s report says they were dismissed because there was not “sufficient evidence of a breach of party rules to proceed with an investigation”.

That looks like an attempt to dodge having to say that any of these members were falsely accused.

But we live in times when many of us believe that a large number of members have been falsely accused, so it is wrong of Ms Formby to sidestep that question.

Furthermore, if any have in fact been falsely accused, then who were the accusers, and what action has been taken against them?

Or has Ms Formby done nothing at all about such liars?

No doubt many among the Parliamentary Labour Party, for whom she wrote her report, would welcome an announcement that she has overlooked such heinous crimes against the innocent.

But I wonder what the membership at large as to say about it?


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