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Brimingham Lib Dems withdraw support from their candidate

Jim Jepps


 

City Liberal Democrat activists have withdrawn their support for candidate Nicola Davies in next Thursday's by-election. Some members are refusing to deliver leaflets, stuff envelopes on the streets of Hodge Hill because she works for the mobile phone industry.

The Erdington branch leadership, which is running a campaign against phone masts in the local area accused the party of hypocrisy.

Charles Kennedy predictably gave his party's candidate a ringing endorsement, and called on activists to unite around Nicola Davies.

Local election candidate for the Lib Dems, Tony Foley, told the local paper "

We feel it would be hypocrisy to involve ourselves in a campaign to elect a person associated with the erection of mobile phone masts when, across this city, Liberal Democrats have been fighting to stop them from being placed in residential areas.

"We feel like we have been betrayed by our party. How can I look people in the eye and ask them sign our petitions when we have this candidate?"

The selection of Ms Davies - nicknamed "Nokia" by opponents - has already been slammed by the influential Birmingham Residents Against Masts lobby group. Members heckled Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy during a campaign walkabout at the Fox and Goose shopping centre last week.

The group, which claims masts are linked to ill-health, say that two years ago she actively pushed for Orange to win consent for a mast next to St Nicholas School, in Bold-mere, Sutton Coldfield and are holding a demonstration this Wednesday.

 

Read the local paper's report

 

July 2004

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