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Politics Labour loses Norwich as councillors quit

Political reporter

LABOUR has lost control of another major city council after more councillors quit the party.

Four city councillors in Norwich resigned saying they were no longer aligned with the principles of the party nationally or locally.

They will now sit as independents, depriving Labour of its majority on the city council. Emma Corlett, deputy Labour group leader at Norfolk County Council, also quit Labour.

One of the four, Karen Davis, has previously contested the Norwich North parliamentary seat for the party.

The other members quitting are Cate Oliver, cabinet member for wellbeing and culture at City Hall; Rachel Everett and Ian Stutely.

The four issued a statement making no direct reference to the Gaza crisis, which has seen more than 50 Labour councillors resign across the country, also costing the party control in Burnley and Oxford councils.

However, they resigned on the same day as a mass protest was held outside the City Hall, pressing the council to come out for a ceasefire in Gaza — a demand backed by much of the Labour Party, including in Parliament, but rejected by leader Sir Keir Starmer.

The statement said: “After long and careful consideration we have made the heartbreaking decision to leave the Labour Party and become independent councillors.

“There are many reasons, but in essence we no longer consider the current national and local Labour Party matches the overriding principles that guide our work.

“We will relentlessly focus on standing up for … residents and our work in the community that makes a difference.”

Labour now has 19 seats on Norwich council, with 13 Greens, three Liberal Democrats and the four new independents making up the rest.

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