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12 Nov, 2019 12:29

‘Sickening’: UK Labour politician slams rival Lib Dem for suggesting she was partly responsible for Grenfell Fire

‘Sickening’: UK Labour politician slams rival Lib Dem for suggesting she was partly responsible for Grenfell Fire

Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Kensington, the west London constituency that includes Grenfell Tower, has hit back at her Liberal Democrat opponent after he suggested she was partially responsible for the tragic 2017 fire.

Lib Dem Sam Gyimah, who is contesting the seat held by Labour’s Emma Dent Coad at the snap UK general election on December 12, was giving his views on phase one of the Grenfell fire report, which was published in October.

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In an interview with the Independent, Gyimah, noting that the assessment revealed many things that went wrong on the night that saw 72 people killed in June 2017, singled out Dent Coad for not stopping the flammable cladding from being given the green light for use on the building.

Emma Dent Coad was on the council and was part of all the discussions that went on in terms of the cladding...there are Labour councillors on there [the council] that could have stopped some of the decisions and didn’t.

The remarks drew an angry response from Dent Coad who branded them “absolutely sickening."

The Labour politician, who had only been narrowly elected just days before the fire, accused Gyimah of trying to “shift the blame for the horror of Grenfell away from austerity” imposed by the coalition of his former and current parties, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats.

The socialist took to social media on Tuesday to troll Gyimah, writing, “#factsaregood” and pointing out that she left Kensington & Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation (KCTMO) in 2012 and that “decisions on cladding” were made by Conservative councillors in September 2014.

Dent Coad has insisted that Labour councillors in Kensington and Chelsea “repeatedly raised concerns” about the cuts made by the Tory-controlled council which ignored warnings from Grenfell residents who said that “this was a tragedy waiting to happen.”

Gyimah defected to the Liberal Democrats in September after becoming fed up with the direction of the Conservatives under Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his drive to deliver Brexit at any cost. Dent Coad, who is defending a slim majority of just 20, will be hoping to fend off Gyimah, who will be trying to garner as much of the pro-EU ‘Remain’ vote as possible.

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