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Ex-Labour stalwart Michael Dugher to quit party, saying anti-Semitism is rife

Ex vice-chairman: Michael Dugher PICTURE: PA

FORMER Labour vice-chairman Michael Dugher has said he intends to leave the party as he now regards it as ‘institutionally anti-Semitic’.

Mr Dugher, who was also the Barnsley East MP between 2010 and 2017, claimed the party had failed to ‘adequately tackle’ the problem.

It came after Labour said it had received 673 allegations about its members in the past ten months, leading to 12 expulsions. It said it amounted to 0.1 per cent of its membership but added: ‘One anti-Semite in our party is one too many.’

Writing in The Sun On Sunday, Mr Dugher said: ‘In all good conscience, I can no longer justify paying subs to a party which I now regard as institutionally anti-Semitic.’ He said situations where Jewish Labour MPs, such as Luciana Berger, needed police protection ‘made him want to cry’.He added he was concerned at the attitude of shadow chancellor John McDonnell after Ms Berger faced a vote of no confidence.

Mr McDonnell suggested the move to censure the MP was over concerns she may join a breakaway party, rather than attacks on Jeremy Corbyn’s handling of anti-Semitism.

He admitted Labour had not been ‘fast enough’ in tackling the problem but its general secretary Jennie Formby was making changes. ‘We’ve got to be ruthless about this,’ he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.