Former Labour minister quits party citing ‘inadequate’ response to antisemitism

Former Labour minister quits party citing ‘inadequate’ response to antisemitism

Bridget Prentice, who was MP for Lewisham East, claimed the party had "been destroyed" under Corbyn's leadership

Bridget Prentice
Bridget Prentice

A former Labour minister has quit the party in protest, citing Jeremy Corbyn’s record on tackling antisemitism.

Bridget Prentice, who was MP for Lewisham East from 1992 to 2010, claimed the party had “been destroyed” under Corbyn’s leadership.

In a strongly-worded attack she said that “in all the major issues of the day, you have called it wrong”.

Prentice, who served as a whip and junior justice minister under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, said “enough is enough” and she was resigning with “deepest sadness and some anger” after 45 years of party membership.

In her resignation letter to acting general secretary Karie Murphy she said she had “watched in horror as Jewish members have begged for support” and been met with a “slow, reluctant and inadequate” response.

“It is easy to say Jeremy is not racist. But there is the sin of omission,” she said.

By “not standing up to the bullies and the anti-Semites” Corbyn “showed no leadership”.

A Labour spokesman said: “It is disappointing that Bridget Prentice has left the party but many claims in her letter are plainly untrue.

“Labour’s bold and popular policies under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership have changed the political conversation in this country and exposed the devastation caused by the Tories’ austerity agenda.

“The Labour Party is absolutely committed to challenging and campaigning against antisemitism in all its forms and wherever it occurs.”

Party sources suggested Prentice was “aggrieved” that she was not re-nominated to serve as Labour’s representative to the Electoral Commission.

read more: