Labour Wins Kensington In Final Result Of UK Election

Britons Vote In Election Expected To Strengthen May's Brexit HandBritain’s opposition Labour Party overturned a large majority to win the seat of Kensington in west London from Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservatives on Friday, the final of 650 seats to declare its result.

Labour was declared the winner of the seat, where the Conservatives previously had a majority of more than 7,000, by just 20 votes, after several recounts.

It means the final tally of seats won by May’s Conservatives is 318, short of the 326 needed for a majority in parliament. Labour won a total of 262 seats.

New Member of Parliament For Kensington, Emma Dent Coad, said, “”Clearly, this election was not all about Brexit. Not around the country and not in this constituency.

“The people of Kensington have spoken and they voted for someone they trust and who will give them a voice. They voted for me because they know I care and I will speak out for them as I have for the last 11 years. I will challenge the council to join us in the 21st century.

“I will continue to work with the GLA (Greater London Authority) to make our air cleaner, reduce traffic make our streets safer, and address our appalling housing crisis. I will take Kensington’s issues and problems to parliament to improve the appalling and unforgivable inequalities here in Kensington.

“This constituency is a microcosm of everything that is wrong in this country after seven years of incompetent and uncaring coalition and Tory government. I will do everything in my power in the next five years to make one Kensington an example of the finest qualities of common humanity mutual respect for all our communities and social justice to create a thoughtful, kind, co-operative and tolerant society where we can all prosper and thrive.”

UK Election: Millions Cast Votes

UK Election
Labour Party leader, Ed Miliband, leaves the polling station at Sutton Village Hall in Sutton after casting his vote in the UK general election on May 7, 2015 in Doncaster, England. Lindsey Parnaby / Anadolu Agency

Britons went to vote on Thursday in the tightest election for decades; one that could cause government gridlock, push the world’s fifth-largest economy closer to leaving the European Union and stoke a second attempt by Scotland to break away. 

Final opinion polls showed Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservatives and Ed Miliband’s opposition Labour Party almost in a dead heat, indicating neither will win enough seats for an outright majority in the 650-seat parliament.

“This race is going to be the closest we have ever seen,” Miliband told supporters in Pendle, northern England, on the eve of the vote. “It is going to go down to the wire.”

Cameron said only his Conservatives could deliver strong, stable government; “All other options will end in chaos.”

The Conservatives portray themselves as the party of jobs and economic recovery, promising to reduce income tax for 30 million people while forcing through further spending cuts to eliminate a budget deficit still running at 5 percent of GDP.

Labour says it would cut the deficit each year, raise income tax for the highest 1 percent of earners and defend the interests of hard-pressed working families and Britain’s treasured but financially stretched National Health Service.

“I think Labour is best for the good of the whole country. The Conservatives have cut spending too much,” said student Abi Samuel at a polling station in Edinburgh’s well-heeled New Town.

Retiree Robert McCairley said it had been a messy campaign.

“What disappoints me is that there was too much on the National Health Service, hospitals and schools but not enough on the deficit – no one showed us the figures,” he said.

If neither party wins an overall majority, talks will begin on Friday with smaller parties in a race to strike deals.

That could lead to a formal coalition, like the one Cameron has led for the past five years with the centrist Liberal Democrats, or it could produce a fragile minority government making trade-offs to guarantee support on key votes.

British top share index fell to a near one-month low although election jitters failed to translate into any significant sell-off. The two main parties have been neck-and-neck in opinion polls for months.

The British Pound Sterling was slightly weaker but the short-term cost of protection against swings in the Pound jumped to multi-year highs.

“What is important to us is clarity as soon as possible,” Andrew Witty, Chief Executive of GlaxoSmithKline, Britain’s sixth-largest company by market value, told reporters.

Taraba State Accountant-General Arraigned For Alleged N1.56 Billion Fraud

Joel-J-Lenbang-BNThe Economic and Financial crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned the Taraba State Accountant- General,  Mr Joel Joseph Lenbang, over the diversion of  N1.56 billion Naira  state funds  at the Jalingo Federal High Court  .

The Accountant-General was arraigned on Wednesday before Justice Donatus Nwabueze Okorowo for defrauding the Taraba State Government.

Lenbang, was docked on an 8-count charge, including obtaining false pretence and abuse of office, offences contrary to and punishable under the Advanced Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006

EFCC’s Head, Media and publicity, Wilson Uwujaren confirmed that  Mr. Lenbang allegedly disguised and withdrew monies for sundry payments on behalf of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), as well as payment of Bank Commissions on Turn Over (COT) and Value Added Tax (VAT) which became a monthly affair making a total sum of N1,567,226,557.081 between January 2012 and December 2013.

Although Lenbang pleaded not guilty to the 8-count charge levied against him, the prosecuting counsel, Al Qasim Ja’afar, applied for a date to commence trial but the counsel to the accused filed a motion for bail.

The Judge, Okorowo adjourned the case till July 11, 2014 for hearing and remanded the accused in prison.

Mr Uwajuren said the EFCC swung into action following a petition received from a concerned Taraba State indigene, sometime in February 2014, alleging massive looting of Taraba state funds.

The petition, according to him, triggered investigation of the lifestyle of some of the officers mentioned in the petition and who were believed to be living above their means

Seats Of Legislators Who Decamp Should Be Declared Vacant- Legal Practitioner

A Chairman of the Editorial Board of National Newspapers, Mr Chris Akiri on Monday noted that the seats of elected government officials that decamp from one political party to the other before the end of their tenure should be declared vacant.

He however pointed that this can only be possible if the carpet crossing is not as a result of a division in the party.

“the constitution is very clear on this issue. If you look at Section 68 for example, for the National Assembly and Section 109 for State Houses of Assembly, the provisions are very clear that if you decamp during the period for which you were elected to office before the lapse of that period then your seat will be declared vacant.

“But there is a proviso; which is provided that if the carpet crossing is not as a result of a division in the party on whose platform you came to office” he said.

He berated the division in the interpretation of the law as stated in the constitution noting that one should not be a perpetrator of such divisions insisting that “no good cause can derive from a bad cause”.

On the governors elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) but decamped to the All Progressives Congress (APC), the legal practitioner said “there is no need to go to court” adding that “they (governors) are not affected because the constitution doesn’t say so.”

He described the type of politics being practiced in Nigeria as a mercenary type insisting that “we jump from pillar to post for selfish interest”.

He added that if “we envision a slight failure on the part of our political party, we jump (to the other) because we would rather belong to a winning camp, a camp that is more likely to win than this party” noting that “it doesn’t happen anywhere”.

He cited the “Conservative and Labour Parties in United Kingdom, the Democrats and Republicans in the United States of America” as role models for our politicians to follow because “you don’t hear things like this” insisting that “they sink or swim with their parties”.

Mr Ikiri, who appeared as a guest on Channels Television’s flagship breakfast show, Sunrise Daily, also called on the National Assembly to focus on things that affects the nation and not on selfish interests.