Royal Mail challenged over missing election freepost in Ladywood.
Birmingham Liberal Democrats have asked senior Royal Mail managers to take action over the non-appearance of tens of thousands of election freepost leaflets for their candidate in Birmingham Ladywood.
The party has asked for immediate action to deliver 53,000 election address leaflets for their candidate Shazad Iqbal, which were submitted to their mail handling centre in Birmingham on Thursday 23rd April.
Under election regulations, the Royal Mail has seven working days to deliver an unaddressed ‘freepost’ election address from a candidate. The Lib Dems say very few of the leaflets appear to have been delivered, especially in Aston ward.
Aston ward was at the centre of ‘city-wide’ postal voting fraud by Labour ten years ago, uncovered by the Liberal Democrats. Former councillor Ayoub Khan, a barrister who helped expose the vote-rigging scandal, said “We are very concerned. The statutory period of seven working days expired this morning – Tuesday – but hardly anyone has seen the Liberal Democrat election address for Shazad. To be frank, I’m not sure it has been delivered anywhere in Aston ward. Certainly not in Albert Road where the candidate lives or Whitehead Road.”
Shazad Iqbal said: “We have been checking with some Lib Dem party members today and there is one report of it being delivered to Brindley Place. It is very frustrating as we could have delivered them ourselves by now. Other candidates’ freepost leaflets all seem to be out, but not mine.”
A Lib Dem spokesman said: “We have escalated our concerns with Royal Mail and asked for immediate action by senior management, as time is running out.
“Last week, our Hodge Hill candidate Phil Bennion was canvassing in Newland Road in Bordesley Green and found that residents there were confused as they had wrongly been delivered the Ladywood Lib Dem freepost. We reported this issue but have yet to receive an explanation.
“The Royal Mail’s central election freepost team say their computerised reports show that the mailing is complete in both constituencies. Clearly something has gone wrong. Generally, there have been fewer reported freepost problems in the region than in previous elections. We hope that the missing leaflets in Birmingham Ladywood are delivered tomorrow.”