JEREMY Corbyn was branded the head of a “leftist clique” yesterday as his supporters removed the head of Labour’s disciplinary panel.
Veteran Ann Black was ousted as chair of the body reviewing racism and abuse claims and replaced by Christine Shawcroft, a director from the pro-Corbyn campaign group Momentum.
She was suspended from the party just three years ago.
Blackadder TV star Tony Robinson branded the decision “outrageous”.
And taking to Twitter the longtime Labour fan said the party had been “completely taken over by and for a leftist clique.”
Within minutes of Ms Shawcroft’s election, Labour was hit by claims the disciplinary panel blocked the escalation of a series of anti-Semitism investigations. Labour sources “categorically” denied the claim.
But the upheaval sparked fresh fears about the hard-left takeover of Labour. Christine Shawcroft was temporarily suspended in 2015 for publicly backing the disgraced mayor of Tower Hamlets.
Last year she described Labour deputy leader Tom Watson as “rather right wing” and branded Mr Corbyn’s Labour opponents as “hard right”.
Her stunning promotion came a day after three Momentum chiefs were elected onto Labour’s ruling NEC body – meaning Corbyn supporters control the panel that sets party rules.
Speaking before Ms Shawcroft’s promotion was confirmed yesterday, longtime Labour supporter Tony Robinson yesterday said: “Ann Black is a brilliant radical voice for ordinary members on the NEC with an awesome work rate.
“The idea of the Corbynite left trying to undermine her is outrageous.
“If true it would confirm what I’ve always feared – our party completely taken over by and for a leftist clique.”
Young Labour NEC rep Jasmin Beckett said she was “disgusted”.
She added: “The NEC Disputes panel is a vital body in tackling sexual harassment and antisemitism in Labour, not a factional playground.”
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