Trotskyites frozen out as Momentum urges members to join Labour

Members of Momentum, the pro-Corbyn support group, are being urged to join the Labour Party in an attempt to end infighting and suspected infiltration by Trotskyist factions.

Jon Lansman, founder of the grassroots movement, has secured agreement for a new constitution that will dissolve the group’s governing structures and require its 20,000 members to sign up to the party.

In an email sent to members of Momentum’s steering committee last night, Mr Lansman said he had drawn up a new structure and rules in response to tensions and splits that had “bedevilled” the party since Jeremy Corbyn was re-elected as Labour leader in September.

In an email seen by The Guardian newspaper, Mr Lansman wrote that the changes should be agreed to “put behind us the paralysis that has for months bedevilled all our national structures and focus on our most urgent task — winning the general election that could come within months”.

In a sign that Mr Corbyn has endorsed the rule change, Mr Lansman claimed the plan was drawn up “in consultation with a number of others in Momentum, the leader’s office and trade unions that have supported Jeremy Corbyn”.

It comes after Mr Corbyn emailed Momentum’s membership last month to ask them to respond to a survey about how the group should be organised and run.

Eighty per cent of members said a new constitution should open up decision-making to members on the basis of a one member one vote system, rather than the present delegate structure.

The requirement for Momentum members to join Labour could force out left-wing figures including the Jill Mountford, of the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty, and Nick Wrack, a former member of Militant, both of whom areexcluded from the Labour Party.

Ms Mountford yesterday accused Mr Lansman of staging a coup and said that she and fellow Momentum activists would seek to challenge the proposals.

“We are going to call a conference for grassroots activists and we will to seek to reverse these changes. The constitution has been imposed, we are going to continue to fight for a democratic organisation.” she said.

Momentum issued a statement yesterday confirming that its existing structures would be dissolved and elections would be held for a new ruling body. The new steering committee would then set out proposals for affiliation with the Labour Party.

“Momentum is moving forwards as the outward-looking, campaigning movement that our members want it to be.

“Over the coming months, Momentum will continue to grow, building our movement to encourage more people to participate in politics and help Labour harness its new mass membership to win power and rebuild and transform Britain,” the statement said.



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