11 August 2018
Lambeth Green Party has selected Michael Groce as their candidate for the council by-election in Coldharbour Ward, Brixton.
Michael, who has lived in the local area all his life, is a community worker and published poet. A well known local figure, his mother Cherry Groce was shot by police in a dawn raid, sparking the 1985 Brixton Riots. (1)
The selection took place at a packed meeting last night at the Max Roach Centre in the Ward. Five candidates put themselves forward (2)
Speaking after his selection Michael Groce said: "I am thrilled to have been selected as the Green Party's candidate. Over the last few years I have seen the impact of Lambeth Council's 'one party state'. Lambeth Council has had over 50 Labour councillors, with hardly any opposition. This isn't good for anyone. There has been next to no accountability. The council has become complacent and has not been listening to local people over the issues that really matter. This needs to change - and it is changing.
"The Green Party is speaking up for local people and holding the council to account – over the way it spends its money, how it manages its housing, youth services, air pollution and what it does with our parks and open spaces. "
Co-leader of the Green Party and Lambeth Councillor Jonathan Bartley who also attended last night's hustings said: "Right now residents of Colharbour Ward have the most you powerful vote in Lambeth. In May's local elections, despite a Labour surge which saw their best result across London since 1971, the Greens won seats from Labour in Lambeth and become the biggest Green group in London.
"The clear choice in the Coldharbour by-election will be yet another Labour councillor to join the others who will simply vote the way they are told to, or a Green who will stand up for the local community, hold the council to account and make a real difference. "
The by-election will take place on Thursday 13th September.
(2) The full list of candidates: Michael Groce, Jack McQuibban, Betiel Mahari, Dzaier (Zi) Neil, Rashid Nix. Candidate statements can be seen here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/19tSAdSJ1FV7Tsflnnazmt8XFHrZp3zx7/view