Former top Corbyn aide joins Richard Leonard's Scottish Labour leadership campaign
A former aide to Jeremy Corbyn has joined Richard Leonard's leadership campaign
Richard Leonard - Image credit: Richard Leonard
A former top aide to Jeremy Corbyn has joined Richard Leonard's campaign to be the new leader of Scottish Labour.
In a major coup, Simon Fletcher will help Leonard in his bid to defeat Anas Sarwar and succeed Kezia Dugdale in the top job.
Fletcher rose to prominence as chief of staff to Ken Livingstone when the left-winger was Mayor of London.
The hugely-respected official led Corbyn's campaign to become Labour leader in 2015, and rose to become the party leader's director of campaigns and planning.
However, he quit in February amid claims he had become disillusioned by the party's direction.
At the time, Corbyn said: "Simon has played a vital role in shaping the new politics and building Labour’s campaign to rebuild and transform Britain.
"I’ve know Simon for many years, we will continue to work together on the cause of social justice in Britain and I wish him well in the future.”
Leonard said: "I can confirm that Simon is joining my leadership campaign team.
“He brings a wealth of experience which will help give the campaign real organisational strength and direction. I am delighted he is joining us."
The battle to be Scottish Labour leader is significant for the UK party as the winner will claim a seat on its ruling national executive council.
The key decision-making body is currently finely-balanced between moderates and the party's left-wing, but a victory for Leonard will tip it in Corbyn's favour.
In an exclusive interview with Holyrood, Mhairi Black says the SNP needs “a kick up the backside” to make the party realise the need to offer greater support to its MPs
Call for more power to be devolved to community councils in the Highlands
Environmental campaigners welcomed plans for £340m in capital funding for the National Investment Bank, while urging ministers to ensure it helps develop Scotland’s low carbon...
In a year of confusion and division, it's hard to escape the feeling that 2017 was the year of Farage