Diane Abbott hits out at Labour investigation following her suspension

Diane Abbott

Diane Abbott at a protest last year over the Child Q scandal

Local MP Diane Abbott has criticised the Labour party’s investigation following her suspension – and has received backing from a Hackney councillor.

Abbott fell foul of the party earlier this year after writing a letter to the Observer newspaper about racism.

In it, she claimed that while white people, including Jewish people, Travellers and Irish people, experience prejudice, “they are not all their lives subject to racism”.

She apologised for the letter but had the whip withdrawn after 36 years as a Labour MP.

Abbott has now fired a broadside against the party, claiming: “As a Black woman, and someone on the left of the Labour party, I have unfortunately been forced to reach the conclusion that I will not get a fair hearing from this Labour leadership.”

In an open letter, she said she had “immediately and unreservedly apologised” for her words.

She added that the Labour party has not charged her with antisemitism.

“As someone who has fought all forms of racism all my life, I would consider it a very serious allegation,” she said.

She also accused Labour of intervening in Hackney’s constituency parties by stopping their access to internal communication systems, through which they contact members.

This followed the revelation that former Labour councillor Tom Dewey was facing charges of possessing indecent images of children.

Dewey has since been given a suspended sentence after admitting his guilt.

Abbott said the party stepped in after members raised safeguarding concerns.

She claimed its intervention, including the removal of locally elected officers, means “the Labour apparatus has decapitated the elected leadership of the constituency party to install its own hand-picked personnel and replace me as the candidate prior to the next election”.

Cllr Soraya Adejare, who is a former Speaker of the council and represents Brownswood ward, took to Twitter, now known as X, to support Abbott.

She commented: “The fact our MP has been compelled to pen this is woeful. Since 1987 she has been a Hackney North Labour ally to every marginalised group. Her apology was immediate.”

A spokesman for national Labour said the party “rightly expects the highest standards of behaviour from its elected representatives and has introduced an independent complaints process to investigate cases”.

“We do not give a running commentary on ongoing investigations,” he added.