EXCL Labour boss Iain McNicol reveals Ken Livingstone is under investigation again
Labour’s general secretary has confirmed that another investigation is underway into Ken Livingstone’s conduct.
The former mayor of London has continued to claim that Adolf Hitler supported Zionism, despite being found guilty of three counts of bringing the party into disrepute on Tuesday for comments he made last year.
Mr Livingstone was not expelled from Labour for the offences, leading to a backlash from several members of the Shadow Cabinet and representatives of the Jewish community.
Jeremy Corbyn labelled his comments “grossly insensitive” and revealed that the National Executive Committee, Labour’s ruling body, would consider whether Mr Livingstone’s actions in recent days warranted further action.
Iain McNicol, the Labour general secretary, this afternoon wrote to members of the NEC confirming new inquiries were underway after the outcry about the decision not to kick Mr Livingstone out.
In an email titled "Ken Livingstone" he said: “The Labour party has received many complaints following the end of the recent hearing of the NCC [National Constitution Committee] and I have instructed my staff to follow the procedures and begin an investigation into whether the party’s rules may have been broken again.
“If they have then I am determined they are investigated fully and properly.”
He added that he intended to make sure Labour’s “organisational response matches the challenges” following complaints that it had been too lenient.
Mr McNicol has asked NEC members to offer their input before their next meeting, when he will give an update on the investigation.
Mr Livingstone has been unrepentant since the NCC’s ruling, saying it was “important that the Labour party should not expel or suspend people for telling the truth”.
Last week he claimed that German Jews had acted in “collaboration” with the Nazi regime before the outbreak of World War II – comments that are believed not to have been examined in the hearing.
The row began last April when Mr Livingstone told the BBC that Hitler had been “supporting Zionism before he went mad and ended up killing six million Jews”, while defending Labour MP Naz Shah for a post on social media – for which she has since apologised – suggesting moving Israel to the United States.