Labour party South Yorkshire mayor ballot 'deferred,' claims former candidate

Richard Caborn.
Richard Caborn.
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Former sports minister Richard Caborn has claimed the Labour party has deferred its ballot for the South Yorkshire mayoral election following concerns raised about him not making the shortlist for the vote.

Mr Caborn said he was "surprised and very disappointed" when told the news last month and has now claimed the party has deferred handing the ballot papers out to members "in response to concerns raised over the shortlisting process".

The former Sheffield Central MP said he would not be taking legal action but would push to ensure a "fair and democratic" process.

Mr Caborn, who was was minister of sport from 2001 to 2007 and Sheffield Central MP from 1983 to 2010, said: "I have been informed that the Labour Party have deferred the distribution of ballot papers to members across South Yorkshire, in response to concerns raised over the shortlisting process for the party’s selection of a candidate for City Region Mayor.

“As stated, I was surprised and disappointed at the Yorkshire Regional Labour Party’s decision to deprive South Yorkshire Labour Party members from having their say on whether I could represent them as the Labour candidate for this important position. A number of fellow Labour Party members have agreed and since sought to challenge this decision, raising concerns that it was unfair and undemocratic.

“I shall not be pursuing this matter legally, as I do not wish to bring the party into further disrepute. However, I will be pushing this matter through the political channels open to me, to ensure a fair and democratic process for future party members.”

“I would like to thank people for all their kind words and support throughout this time.”