Shahrar Ali to stand for Green Party deputy leadership
A third candidate in the Green Party of England and Wales deputy leadership election has come forward as nominations for the contest closed at 12pm today. Shahrar Ali, who was previously deputy leader from 2014-16 announced on Twitter that he’s put himself forward.
Upon his election in 2014, Ali was the first person of colour elected as a deputy leader of a political party with seats in parliament in the UK. He served for two years alongside Amelia Womack before losing his bid for re-election in 2016.
Since, he has stood to be leader of the party three times – in 2018, 2020 and 2021 – picking up around a fifth of the first preference votes in each contest. He also served as the party’s appointed spokesperson for home affairs and for policing. Earlier this year, he was removed as a party spokesperson as a result of what the chair of the party’s executive said were “breaches of the Speakers’ Code of Conduct”.
As a result of his removal as a spokesperson, and the criticism he has experienced for his comments on trans rights, he currently has a legal claim lodged against the party over what he alleges is “unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation for daring to express my gender critical views”.
Ali has said that he is standing for the deputy leadership in order to “ensure an inhabitable planet for our children” and because “women [are] crying out for a politician to speak plainly on [the] importance of sex-based rights”.
At least two other candidates will be in the running for the deputy leadership. Hackney based Tyrone Scott announced his candidacy on June 23. His announcement followed that of London Assembly member Zack Polanski who launched his campaign on June 6.
Earlier this year, Amelia Womack confirmed she would not be seeking re-election for the deputy leadership post, having served in it for eight years.
Green Party members will vote in the deputy leadership election throughout the summer. Elections for the deputy leadership of the party take place every two years.
Shahrar Ali was approached for comment.
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This article was jointly published with Left Foot Forward.