Exclusive: Momentum Organisers slate wins majority on group’s executive

Katie Neame

Momentum members have elected a new national coordinating group with candidates on the Momentum Organisers slate winning a narrow majority on the left-wing organisation’s governing body, LabourList can reveal.

Momentum Organisers won 15 of the 29 elected seats on the national coordinating group (NCG), while the Your Momentum slate took 14 seats. There are 11 additional seats on the NCG for affiliated unions and campaign groups.

Commenting after the release of the results today, a Momentum spokesperson told LabourList: “While in Westminster the Tories fall into civil war, out there in the country a wave of industrial struggle is rising in response to an escalating cost-of-living crisis. The need for a bold socialist alternative is clearer than ever.”

Boris Johnson announced today that he will be resigning as leader of the Conservatives. He will be remaining as Prime Minister until a new leader has been elected. The timetable for the leadership election will be announced next week.

The spokesperson added: “Momentum is ready to rise to the challenge. Our energetic new leadership team represent the full breadth and diversity of our movement, from trade unionists to youth leaders to anti-racist activists.

“United and determined, we will campaign for the deep change that this country is crying out for, instead of another empty Tory suit.”

The election was run using a single-transferable vote system. Momentum members voted to change the voting system for NCG elections as part of the group’s recent ‘refounding’ process earlier this year. Turnout was 3,380.

NCG members were elected by region and using diversity quotas, with the intention of ensuring a “leadership team representing modern Britain”. The newly elected members of the executive body will serve a two-year term.

Momentum Organisers candidates received 1,708 first preference votes, compared to 1,544 secured by Your Momentum hopefuls. Newly elected NCG member Sasha Das Gupta said the group is “thrilled and honoured that Momentum members have trusted us with a majority of votes and seats”.

She told LabourList: “Our calls for organising focused on key sites of power struck a chord with members who are crying out for clear direction and decisive leadership on the left. But we can’t rest on our laurels, as Johnson’s resignation shows.

“From parliamentary selections to elections to Labour’s youth wings, and a possible general election to boot, Momentum must face up to huge challenges, together. To overcome them and rebuild the left, we need to coordinate, from parliament to the picket line. Let’s get organised – and let’s get to work.”

LabourList understands that the Momentum Organisers members are confident that the group’s majority of elected representative positions will be matched by a majority on the NCG as a whole when the executive body first meets.

The Momentum Organisers campaign called for an approach to organising that “strengthens our institutional power bases” within the party and “coordinates the defence of the left”, working with Socialist Campaign Group MPs and left-led unions.

Your Momentum advocated for a “one-foot-in-one-foot-out” platform to “build within Labour, work with our trade union colleagues, and build grassroots community resistance to exploitation and oppression”. The slate’s precursor campaign, Forward Momentum, won all member representative seats in the 2020 NCG elections.

The Your Momentum slate was backed by John McDonnell and Nadia Whittome, while Rebecca Long-Bailey and Grahame Morris gave their support to Momentum Organisers. Zarah Sultana backed two Momentum Organiser candidates and one Your Momentum candidate.

Three members of the current NCG ran for reelection, of which two were successful – Labour national executive committee member Mish Rahman and outgoing national secretary Sonali Bhattacharyya, who both ran on the Your Momentum slate.

Rahman told LabourList: “Momentum members have voted and the results for each slate are a hair’s breadth apart, with neither side holding an outright majority on Momentum’s governing body – the national coordinating group.

“Our campaigns shared a lot of common ground. Now its time to unite and build a common platform. We are calling on all NCG members to back our proposal for the new NCG to elect co-chairs from each slate in order to take Momentum forwards in unity.”

Successful candidates on the Momentum Organisers slate include Labour Muslims Network co-founder Samayya Afzal and Worthing Labour campaign co-ordinator Hilary Schan-Martyn.

The changed voting system following Momentum’s refounding process resulted in altered regions being used, with the number of seats being relatively proportionate to the number of members in each of these new regions.

The new NCG will meet for the first time on July 16th, when the chair or co-chairs will be selected, as well as other key positions on the executive body.

There will be four Momentum affiliates on the new NCG: Labour for a Green New Deal, Campaign for Labour Party Democracy, Labour Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Labour Black Socialists.

The Communications Workers Union will hold two seats on the NCG, along with one each for the TSSA, the FBU, the Welsh Labour Grassroots, Campaign for Socialism (Momentum’s sister organisation in Scotland) and the Socialist Campaign Group.

Below is a full list of candidates elected to the NCG by region. Their campaign statements can be found here.

London and Eastern

  • Sasha Das Gupta (MO)
  • Imogen Tranchell (YM)
  • Sonali Bhattacharyya (YM)
  • Martin Abrams (MO)
  • Izella Drake (MO)
  • Lorcan Whitehead (YM)

South East

  • Hilary Schan (MO)
  • Leila Erin-Jenkins (YM)
  • Nekisa Gholami-Babaahmady (MO)

South West

  • Kieran Glasssmith (MO)
  • Ruth Day (MO)
  • Lillian Chasteau (MO)

Midlands

  • Mish Rahman (YM)
  • Sarah Shepherd (YM)
  • Domanic Smith-Jones (YM)
  • Maya Patel (MO)

Yorkshire, Northern Ireland & International

  • Aleem Bashir (YM)
  • Samayya Afzal (MO)
  • Chantel Waring (YM)

Northern

  • Kathryn Manley (MO)
  • Andrew Hedges (YM)
  • Kate Dove (MO)
  • Mo Suhail (MO)
  • Thirza Asanga-Rae (YM)

Wales

  • Cathy Augustine (YM)

Scotland

  • Coll McCail (YM)

Public Office Holders

  • Samuel Sweek (MO)
  • Rochelle Charlton-Laine (YM)
  • Nyla Ibrahim (MO)

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