Former Peterborough Liberal Democrat councillors join council’s Labour group

Labour councillors from left: Stuart Martin, Shaz Nawaz, Julia Davidson, Darren Fower and Amjad Iqbal
Labour councillors from left: Stuart Martin, Shaz Nawaz, Julia Davidson, Darren Fower and Amjad Iqbal
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Two city councillors who were previously members of the Liberal Democrats have now joined the authority’s Labour group.

Gunthorpe representatives Darren Fower and Julia Davidson have today boosted membership of the Labour group to 14 in the 60 seat Conservative-run council.

The announcement marks a return to Labour for Cllr Fower who previously joined the party in September 2017 after defecting from the Lib Dems, only to be voted.

However, in January this year he was voted out of Labour by the constituency party and had been sitting as an independent since then.

Cllr Davidson had also been sitting as an independent since January after leaving the Lib Dems at that time.

Leader of the council’s Labour group Cllr Shaz Nawaz said he sees both new members as “long-term members of the group”.

He added: “I am delighted to welcome both Darren and Julia to the team. They’ve proven that they are talented, popular and able councillors, and their future contribution to the Labour team will be enormously valuable.

“Darren and Julia joining us means we are closer than ever to having the right people in place to bring about the policies needed to make a better future for Peterborough.”

The boost to the Labour numbers comes a month after two of its councillors, Cllr Matthew Mahabadi and Cllr Richard Ferris, resigned.

The Conservatives currently hold 31 council seats, the Liberal Democrats seven and Werrington First three. UKIP, the Green Party and the Liberal Party all also hold one seat.

Two seats remain vacant following the resignations of Cllrs Mahabadi and Ferris.

Roughly a third of the council seats are being contested in May 2019.

Cllr Fower said: “I’m pleased to be joining the Labour Group at such an exciting time; I’m confident that Labour has the policies to transform Peterborough and my own area of Gunthorpe. I’m looking forward to working with Shaz and the rest of the team to make this happen.”

Cllr Davidson said: “As a councillor and a Gunthorpe resident, I’ve seen how the lack of effective policies from the Conservative administration are failing the people of Peterborough and my area. Labour offers the best way forward for everyone. I am happy that I’ve joined.”

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