One of the things raised in Michael Crick’s Newsnight story on Luton South was a criticism that the Liberal Democrats in Luton weren’t attacking enough on the issue of disgraced Labour MP Margaret Moran’s expenses. This was an unfair criticism. Luton South candidate Qurban Hussain and the Luton Liberal Democrats have been at the forefront of the campaign against Moran’s abuse of the expenses system.
The evidence can be found online. For example;
As far back as last May, as the scandal broke, Qurban Hussain was condemning Margaret Moran over her excessive expense claims; ‘Lib Dem challenger condemns Luton South MP Moran for expense claims’. He was saying;
“This is not the first time that Ms Moran has been in trouble over her expenses. It is time she stopped trying to defend her indefensible and immoral lining of her own pocket at the taxpayers expense”
In October 2009 Qurban was one of the first people to sign up to a local paper’s anti Moran campaign; ‘Qurban Hussain supports Luton and Dunstable Express’ Margaret Moran Campaign’. He then proposed a motion to Luton Borough Council that condemned Moran and called on her to resign, a motion that the Labour Councillors rejected and amended.
In November Qurban wrote to Gordon Brown demanding that Moran have her resettlement grant cut; ‘I write to Gordon Brown over the Margaret Moran affair’. And then in December Qurban was demanding that the newly selected Labour candidate come clean about his attitude to the Moran expense scandal; ‘Where Does the Labour Candidate Stand On Moran?’
Finally, you can find the statements made by Qurban in response to the recent Channel 4 Dispatches programme and her expulsion from the Labour party here. Including;
“So, after not working for her constituents for ten months the Labour Party has suspended Margaret Moran.
Far too little and far too late.
This will not stop her getting her payout in six weeks time and this certainly does not make up for for their total lack of concern for Luton South residents for the last ten months. Once again she has caused national outrage and the Labour Party should apologise to every single resident in Luton South.
We have been neglected while the Labour Party protected their own.
If she had done the last honourable thing she could have done for her constituents once the expenses scandal broke then she would have not been in a position to neglect us while trying to make money for herself. The Luton Labour Party should have stood up in support of local residents and called for her to resign, but they never did.”