DIS­GRACED MP DODGES QUES­TIONS

MP kicked out by Labour fails to take part in im­por­tant Brexit amend­ment

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - YOUR TELEGRAPH - By Joel Lamy [email protected]­me­dia.co.uk Twit­ter: @PTJoelLamy

Ex­pelled by her party, con­demned by her for­mer col­leagues and miss­ing for an im­por­tant Brexit vote – yet Fiona Onasanya has con­tin­ued to dodge ques­tions as she awaits sen­tenc­ing for per­vert­ing the course of jus­tice.

An­other dif­fi­cult week for the Peter­bor­ough MP be­gan last Thurs­day when Labour Party chair Ian Lav­ery re­vealed to the Peter­bor­ough Tele­graph that the party had ex­pelled Ms Onasanya the day af­ter her con­vic­tion for ly­ing to po­lice over speed­ing points.

Mr Lav­ery, who was vis­it­ing party mem­bers in Peter­bor­ough, called on Ms Onasanya to quit so res­i­dents could elect a new MP.

He said the peo­ple of Peter­bor­ough had been “failed” by Ms Onasanya and that he was “ab­so­lutely con­fi­dent” Labour would win a by-elec­tion should one be held here.

Fur­ther con­dem­na­tion came the fol­low­ing day from leader of the Labour group on Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil Cllr Shaz Nawaz, who said Ms Onasanya had “let the vot­ers of Peter­bor­ough down”.

He added: “I am proud of the Labour Party’s de­ci­sive ac­tion in this sad af­fair. But more than that, I am ex­cited at the be­gin­ning of a new chap­ter in Peter­bor­ough, and the chance to elect the new Labour MP Peter­bor­ough de­serves.”

Both men said Labour would cam­paign to re­move the MP if a re­call pe­ti­tion opened up fol­low­ing her sen­tenc­ing. No date for the sen­tenc­ing has been set, the Old Bai­ley con­firmed yes­ter­day.

Ms Onasanya, who is now sit­ting as an in­de­pen­dent MP, was ex­pected to con­tinue her du­ties on her re­turn to the Com­mons on Mon­day, but the fol­low­ing day she failed to vote on a cru­cial amend­ment to the Fi­nance Bill which lim­its min­is­ters’ abil­ity to make tax changes con­nected to a no deal Brexit with­out Par­lia­ment’s “ex­plicit con­sent”.

North West Cam­bridgeshire MP Shailesh Vara sided with the Gov­ern­ment which nar­rowly lost the vote.

Stam­ford MP Nick Boles and Hunt­ing­don MP Jonathan Djano­gly were among the rebel Con­ser­va­tives to vote for the amend­ment. Mr Boles re­vealed he re­ceived a death threat fol­low­ing the vote.

Three weeks af­ter her con­vic­tion Ms Onasanya has still not spo­ken pub­licly about the trial, although she was spot­ted out­side her home in Peter­bor­ough last Thurs­day. She refers to her­self as an “in­de­pen­dent MP” in her col­umn for the PT this week, but does not ex­plain the cir­cum­stances around her ex­pul­sion from Labour.

Photo: Terry Har­ris

Fiona Onasanya pic­tured in Peter­bor­ough last Thurs­day.

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