London’s Labour mayor Sadiq Khan on Sunday (21) urged party members to unseat boss Jeremy Corbyn in the upcoming leadership election, saying he had “failed to win the respect of the British people.”
“Jeremy’s personal ratings are the worst of any opposition leader on record and the Labour party is suffering badly as a result,” Khan wrote in the Observer, the Sunday version of the centre-left Guardian newspaper.
“He has lost the confidence of more than 80 percent of Labour’s MPs in parliament—and I am afraid we simply cannot afford to go on like this,” he added.
Khan is backing Owen Smith in the upcoming party election, voting for which will begin on Monday when ballot papers will be sent out to Labour members.
Voting ends on September 21 with the result to be announced three days later during a special congress in Liverpool, northwest England.
Veteran leftist Corbyn, 67, stormed to the head of the party last September, securing 59.5 percent of the votes of party activists.
However, over 80 percent of the party’s MPs recently backed a no-confidence vote in Corbyn, and an election was triggered when little-known MP Smith, 46, launched a leadership challenge.