Victories for both Labour and Conservative candidates in local elections held this week, reports James Cracknell
The results are in for a series of elections held in Waltham Forest this week, with both Labour and Conservative candidates being victorious.
In the London Assembly vote, where candidates for the north-east seat were looking to succeed Labour’s long-serving assembly member Jennette Arnold, the party’s new candidate Sem Moema won comfortably with 51% of the vote. This still represented a decline of 7% on Labour’s previous vote share won in 2016.
In second place was the Green candidate Caroline Russell, on 20%, which was a 7% rise on the party’s 2016 result in the north-east constituency. In third was Conservative Emma Best, a councillor in Waltham Forest who polled at 19%, while fourth was the Liberal Democrat Kate Pothalingam, on 7%.
Victorious candidate Sem is a councillor in Hackney who said she was standing to “build a society based on our shared Labour values, truly for the many and not the few”. She added: “As your assembly member, I will work with the mayor to undo the damage done by the Tories, delivering on the issues that matter to Londoners.”
In the London mayoral race, the final result of which is due to be announced on Saturday night or Sunday morning, 49.7% of voters in the north-east area – Waltham Forest, Hackney and Islington boroughs – picked incumbent Sadiq Khan as their first-preference pick. In second was Tory Shaun Bailey, on 19.7%; in was third Green candidate Sian Berry, on 10.8%; fourth was Lib Dem Luisa Porritt, on 3.1%; and fifth was Niko Omilana, an independent, on 1.8%.
Voters in the Hatch End ward of Waltham Forest were also asked this week to pick a new councillor, following the death of Conservative Geoff Walker. The Tories were able to hold the seat with 50.9% backing the party’s new candidate Justin Halabi, ahead of Labour’s Catherine Burns, who polled 38.4%.
On Twitter, Cllr Halabi said: “It is an honour to be elected as the councillor for Hatch Lane ward. To all of those who voted against over-development, voted Conservative, and voted for Justin Halabi – I appreciate it more than I can describe.
“Together, we will make a difference in Chingford and Highams Park.”