Former Labour MP John Mann has warned he will be no bystander in “driving out the stench of intolerance” in the party over antisemitism.
Lord Mann, who was appointed by former prime minister Theresa May to head a government inquiry on tackling antisemitism, praised the “innate decency” of voters in the recent election.
In his maiden Lords speech, he said voters had rejected the “extremism of antisemitism” and praised Mrs May for standing by him and his family when they were targeted over his stance on the issue.
He said in north London on election day an elderly Jewish couple who had voted Labour all their lives had wept as they went into and left the polling station.
Vowing to work cross-party and be independent in his role on antisemitism, Lord Mann said: “I will be no bystander in driving out the stench of intolerance from the party that in 1906 my family helped to create in the city of Leeds in the streets around Holbeck Moor.”
The non-affiliated peer’s comments came in second reading debate on the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill implementing Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal.
Watch a clip from Lord Mann’s speech here:
Stonking maiden speech from new peer and Antisemitism Tsar @LordJohnMann:
This election showed the innate decency of the British people.
The extremism of anti-Semitism was unequivocally rejected across the entirety of the country. pic.twitter.com/ZLTBgtKuzE
— Theodora Dickinson (@TheaDickinson) January 13, 2020