Indies name their candidates in local hot seats

Image 02-03-2022 at 17.49

Perennially disgraced hyper-locals, the Failsworth Independent Party, have named their two candidates for the forthcoming Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council elections.

Sandra Ball will stand in Failsworth West and Lucia Rea (pictured above left) will stand in Failsworth East. They will face Labour opposition in the shape of sitting West ward councillor, Pete Davis, and Marzia Babakarkhail (read more here).

No other Party has announced candidates as yet, including The Real Independent Party who last year fielded self-proclaimed public nuisance, Warren Bates, as its candidate. There was speculation early in the year that he would stand against Cllr Davis as a FIP candidate but that appears to have fizzled out (read more here). Not least, as he now faces a police investigation over election expense irregularities associated with his expenses return in May, 2021.

Sandra, who actually lives in the East ward and is described as ‘a good, old-fashioned Tory’, is an administrator of the controversial Failsworth Matters Facebook forum which has attracted significant, and adverse, media attention. She also runs Failsworth Litterbusters when not living in Spain, where she spends a significant amount of her time. Popular locally, she will present a stern challenge at the polls to Cllr Davis.

Lucia, whose family hail from Arpino in Italy, is reported to run an ice cream parlour in Shaw and does not appear to have been politically active over the past several years. Her Facebook profile repeats numerous times that she is ‘Manchester born and bred’. It is understood, however, that she was a founding member of FIP and an early supporter of the Raja Miah anti-Labour narrative. Given her friendship with Cllr Brian Hobin, the FIP Council Group Leader, who has the dubious distinction of having appeared twice as a star guest on the thoroughly discredited Recusant Nine podcasts, which Miah hosts, that is not a great surprise.

Amongst those whom Lucia follows on Twitter, from a total of just 24, is the stalking, trolling, racist, far-right account, ‘Oldham Eye’. Her candidacy is much the most likely of the two to attract controversy.

UPDATE: Warren Bates has confirmed on the Failsworth Matters forum that he is not standing in the May election. He has pledged to support the two FIP candidates. News that might not be entirely welcomed by the independents as the frequently disgraced Bates is a self-admitted public nuisance.

Page last updated: Wednesday 9th March, 2022 at 1145 hours

Corrections: Please let me know if there is a mistake in this article. I will endeavour to correct it as soon as possible.

Picture credit:  Parliament UK

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© Neil Wilby 2015-2021. Unauthorised use, or reproduction, of the material contained in this article, without permission from the author, is strictly prohibited. Extracts from, and links to, the article (or blog) may be used, provided that credit is given to Neil Wilby Media, with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Published by Neil Wilby

Former Johnston Press area managing director. Justice campaigner. Freelance investigative journalist.

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