Disgraced Labour activist, Jackie Walker, who is currently suspended from the Labour Party, has had her case referred to the party’s National Consitutional Committee (NCC). The 11-member NCC has the power to expel individuals from the party. Walker was suspended by Labour in September 2016 following comments she made about Holocaust Memorial Day at the Labour Party Conference.
The JC reported that at a meeting of Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) in central London it was decided that the allegations were serious enough to push the hearing up to the party’s NCC.
The paper also reported that Marc Wadsworth has also had his hearing referred to the NCC. Wadsworth, a Labour activist, was suspended after accusing Jewish Labour MP Ruth Smeeth of conspiring with the media at the launch event of Baroness Chakrabarti’s whitewash report into antisemitism. Smeeth fled the event in tears whilst Chakrabarti and Jeremy Corbyn stood by inertly.
At last year’s Labour conference in Liverpool, during a training session on tackling antisemitism, Walker said that Holocaust Memorial Day is not inclusive enough and that Jewish schools do not need special security.
Walker, a leading ally of Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and the former Vice-Chair of the hard-left Momentum group, said that Holocaust Memorial Day should be “open to all peoples who’ve experienced Holocaust” and as delegates angrily heckled her, she told the room: “I was a bit concerned…at your suggestions that the Jewish community is under such threat that they have to use security in all its buildings…I have a grandson, he is a year old. There is security in his nursery and every school has security now. It’s not because I’m frightened or his parents are frightened that he is going to be attacked.” She earlier said that antisemitism was being “exaggerated” to “undermine Jeremy.”
Labour’s failure to act over allegations of antisemitism has been chilling. Campaign Against Antisemitism hopes that this time with Walker and Wadsworth it will be different. However, with Labour’s appalling track record, we have little confidence.
It is worth noting that although the egregious behaviour of Jackie Walker appears, finally, to be being dealt with, even longer standing disciplinary cases, such as those of Ken Livingstone’s offensive claims that Hitler supported Zionism and the antisemitic members of the Oxford University Labour Club, are still waiting to be heard. Many more remain cloaked in secrecy under the terms of the notorious Chakrabarti report.
This reluctance has provided a fetid place for antisemitism to breed, and that delay has in itself allowed older antisemitic conspiracy theories to flourish, such as the conspiracy myth that the Rothschild family exerts financial control over central banks.
We hope that justice will be done, and be seen to be done, however, with Labour’s appalling track record we have little confidence that it will be.