Manchester Gorton Labour selection: runners and riders

Here is a piece on runners and riders in Manchester Gorton for the Labour Party selection. There are around 2,000 members eligible to vote. If you know someone running message me at [email protected]. There are numerous other Gorton articles that can be viewed on the main page of the site.

Definitely Running

Afzal Khan MEP

Afzal Khan, should be considered the front runner. Whilst his spokesman is currently refusing to confirm that Afzal is running, it’s more likely that aliens land in Manchester city centre than Afzal not run.

Pakistani born he moved to the UK aged 11 and became a Greater Manchester Police Officer. Qualifying as a lawyer he became a Labour Councillor in 2000 rising to become the Lord Mayor. He became an MEP in 2014 after seeking to become an MP for many years. He carries huge respect around the region.

Through his aide Chris Webb he has close links to the unions.

Councillor Julie Reid

Julie has confirmed that she is standing. A career teacher she is a Councillor for Gorton South and has been involved in the CLP for many years. She unsuccessfully stood for selection in Ashton before the 2015 election. She is likely to pick up the votes of activists on the Gorton side of the constituency not in the Khan, Akbar or Rahman camps. 

Councillor Mike Amesbury 

Sources close to Amesbury confirm he is standing. Mike has the infamy of being the person who got me involved in Manchester Labour 11 years ago. A long-term Fallowfield Councillor he’s worked for the Labour Party and politicians in the region. He is currently working on Andy Burnham’s Mayoral bid, having previously been Angela Rayner’s office manager. He was the front-runner for the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election in 2010 before pulling out at the last minute. He is likely to attract activists not in one of the other camps and could potentially attract support from new members, not tarred with the fierce internal politics in the constituency. 

Sam Wheeler

My understanding is Wheeler has been planning a bid for his home seat for some time. The Oxford graduate has the support of Jeremy Corbyn and Momentum and has heavy hitters working on his ground campaign. Mr Wheeler's grandad was sacked by Boddington’s for trade union organising. He worked for 2 MPs and is now a civil servant. An outside bet.

Likely to stand

Julie Ward MEP

I understand the MEP is running although her office refused to comment when I spoke with them. Ward is not well respected in political circles due to a dispute over her Cumbria office and likely wouldn’t get on the shortlist. 

Councillor Josie Tuebler 

I’ve been told the Didsbury West Councillor is going to run. Has a very small chance of success due to her lack of a powerbase in the constituency and lack of profile. 

Councillor Rabnawaz Akbar

The controversial Akbar is almost certain to stand but doesn’t return messages, so I am unable to confirm this. The Rusholme Councillor has been running an active campaign for the seat for some time and has a fierce, bitter and ugly personal feud with Luthfur Rahman. Mr Akbar is likely to command a large block vote, based on his loyal following among the Rusholme membership.

Councillor Luthfur Rahman

Longsight Councillor Rahman hasn’t replied to any of my multiple attempts to contact him. He will almost certainly run and like Akbar commands a large block vote based around Longsight. He has been the target of a vicious smear campaign by an anonymous Twitter account. The Twitter account is linked to a supporter of a rival candidate.

Councillor Amina Lone

The 2015 candidate in Morecambe and Lonsdale, Amina Lone is a Councillor in Hulme. Well respected at a national level for her campaigning and social work. She will likely get onto the shortlist if she runs. I understand from multiple sources she intends to stand and she didn’t reply to my request for a comment


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