Wednesday, 5 December 2007


Naturally, the Labour Donorgate scandal dominates many of the Eye’s column inches, with a good mix of jokes and serious articles. On the funny side (but painful being a northerner) a cartoon depicts a car driving down a motorway, passing a sign saying “The North East: Twinned With Nigeria”.

On the serious side, it lists consultant companies who have donated to Labour. Described as “lobbyists”, these groups build relationships with elected government officials. What this means is they all have a client base who pay them to look after their interests with governments and the wider media (and that’s the official version). The unofficial version i.e. mine, is that this is a way for companies to donate money via a third party. Is the Electoral commission interested? No, because it’s not against the law.

Low and behold, whose name should crop up, but Sovereign Strategy, a north east company, which as the most generous of such donors has paid more than £122,000 into the Labour coffers since 2002. What the Eye does not mention, is that South Tyneside’s own deputy council leader Ian Malcolm, is Chief Executive/Deputy Chairman of Sovereign. Now there’s something interesting!

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