Last weeks' (24th May) KTimes carried two stories about potential legal challenges to the results of the Brent Council elections. I don’t know what is happening with the query about the election of Cllr Pawan Gupta in Dudden Hill but I do have some news on the challenge to the count in Queen’s Park.
I understand that Brent Council have written to all the candidates in the Queen’s Park ward acknowledging the concern and the reasoning behind the querry raised by Shahrar Ali. Perhaps as a result of being part of a pilot of new electoral processes, Brent Council have indicated that they will not challenge any petition delivered to them. But there will not be a petition from Shahrar and others, primarily becuase Brent will accept the petition. How so? The costs of petitioning Brent Council in the High Court are prohibitive, even if Brent Council accept the challenge and agree at every step. Costs in the hundreds of pounds could be managed - and would be worth while in investing for the sake of knowing whether or not we were right. Costs in the thousands? in the tens of thousands? These are prohibitive.
I had thought that the Labour Party might have funded the challenge as the gap between Motley (Lib Dem, 1102 votes) and Nerva (Labour, 1059 votes) is but 55 - Could a recount have returned Neil Nerva over William Motley? Perhaps… Is it worth the £000’s to find out?
You can download Shahrar Ali’s final calculations and speculations on the results from the Brent and Harrow Green Party website.