As well as picking the next mayor of London at the May 5 election, you will also vote for a local representative to take the Southwark and Lambeth seat in the Greater London Assembly (GLA).
The GLA works like Southwark Council, only it covers all of London and it is responsible for city-wide planning, big infrastructure projects, housing, the Met Police and the London Fire Brigade.
The News has interviewed candidates fighting to be Southwark and Lambeth’s AM. Here we profile Idham Ramadi of UKIP, Kevin Parkin of the Socialist Party, and Amadu Kanumansa of the All People’s Party…
Idham Ramadi, UKIP
Idham Ramadi has lived in West Dulwich since 2004, and works in Lambeth as a civil servant. He was UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Orpington in the 2015 General Election.
Why vote for him? The London Assembly plays a crucial role in services like TfL and policing. Assembly members are key to making travelling into work cheaper. If people want to see more front-line policing then they need to vote for someone who can stand up for them.
On housing and planning: If we had a UKIP mayor we would make sure people have referendums to decide on planning issues. A referendum could be triggered if five per cent of a people in a catchment area call for one. When you hear about house prices there’s always two sides to it: supply and demand. We should have a list of all the available brown field sites for developers to use. We have also got to look at demand. With second homes we should have penalties where we double council tax for homes left empty.
On improving the police force: We need the police force to be a meritocracy. We need to recruit the brightest and best, irrespective of their background, so I don’t support quotas for hiring ethnic minority officers.
On transport: The Elephant and Castle is a work in progress so let’s wait until everything is complete and see what happens to the traffic flow. If it doesn’t get better we will have a reason to discuss.
Kevin Parkin, Socialist Party
Kevin Parkin grew up in the Peabody Estate in SE1 and now lives in social housing in Burrell Street. He has worked for a disabled charity, for the NHS, as a trade union rep, and is now retired.
Why vote for him? We are the only party that genuinely stands for socialism.
On housing: Our main focus is we do not want to continue with capitalism. Capitalism has continued to throw up our problems with housing. There are houses near me going for £4.5m. I would say there is no such thing as affordable housing in Southwark. We want to encourage people to think differently.
On the Met Police: There is no shortage of police in counties where David Cameron and Conservative politicians live. There should be more police stationed on the streets throughout London while it is under threat from terrorism.
On transport: Trying to get around the Elephant and Castle junction has been ridiculous. Boris Johnson has created more problems for London’s roads.
Amadu Kanumansa, All People’s Party
Amadu Kanumansa has a master’s degree in economic-and-social planning from the University of Kiev and is the manager of a south London car-hire company. He was unavailable for interview, but the News was sent his manifesto. This article is based on excerpts from the manifesto.
Why vote for him? After being represented by Labour for the past 16 years at London Assembly level, Southwark and Lambeth needs a new voice representing their interests at the very top. Together we can build One London and provide a better and more prosperous future for everyone in London.
On housing: “…build 32,000 affordable homes across London every year”.
On the Met Police: “…campaign for the senior level of the Metropolitan Police to be truly representative of London by 2024”.
On transport: “Alongside better transport links, I will fight for 24/7 tube services across the whole underground network by 2020.”