ValrmtAn open letter to Ken Livingstone

Dear Mr Livingstone

This week, a group of concerned London MPs wrote to the Evening Standard raising concerns on behalf of their constituents about the level of influence that RMT boss Bob Crow has on your campaign and would have in running London's transport network if you were re-elected.

This was raised in light of your announcement that you would appoint Ms Shawcross, to chair of Transport for London. This has been pledged despite Ms Shawcross's close links to Bob Crow's RMT and her desire to protest alongside the union, at a time when its bosses were targeting Londoners and London businesses with cynical strikes in the run up to Christmas. I include a photograph of this in case of any misunderstanding.

Given you previously recruited Bob Crow to help run London's transport network by appointing him to the board of TfL when you were Mayor, Bob Crow's very public offer to fund your campaign, when he likened you to a brother, and Ms Shawcross's 'shoulder to shoulder' stance with Bob Crow's RMT, I'm sure you can understand Londoners' concerns. Do you stand with them, hardworking Londoners and London businessess, or do you stand with the union bosses, who try to inflict misery on their lives and bring financial pain to the businesses?

I only ask, because since that letter was published, I have read responses from yourself, your running mate and from London Labour MPs. Most noticeable about these, and common across them all, is the absence of an answer for Londoners over Bob Crow and other union bosses' role in supporting your campaign and any potential future role. This is the specific concern which the original letter raised.

Therefore let me return to it with three simple questions:

  • What value do you place on the role Bob Crow, and other union bosses, have in influencing, helping and supporting your campaign?
  • What percentage of your campaign is funded by union bosses?
  • How are you reaching agreements over their current and future roles in return for their financial stake?

I’m sure you will appreciate why Londoners want to know the answers to these questions as they decide where your loyalty really lies – hardworking Londoners and London businesses or striking union bosses.

I look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely,

Harry Phibbs