David Lammy: Labour council 'out of touch' over £2bn privatisation plans in wake of Grenfell Tower disaster

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Tottenham MP David Lammy today accused his own Labour council of being “out of touch and high-handed” over its £2 billion housing privatisation plans.

The senior Labour MP called on Haringey to consider setting up a council-owned housing company instead of entering into a private-public partnership with developer Lendlease.

He believes this would provide a higher number of social and affordable homes.

Mr Lammy has already called on the council to suspend its regeneration plans until risks are reviewed in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster.

In a letter to Haringey leader Claire Kober, he said: “This is the most controversial and contentious political issue that I have seen in Tottenham since I was first elected to Parliament 17 years ago.

“While I understand the context of funding cuts and constraints on borrowing the council you lead has failed to carry the community with it and has appeared out of touch and high-handed throughout this process.”

Councillors waved through the proposed sale of council houses, public buildings and land – the biggest of its kind in the country – last week.

But residents fear it could force hundreds of families out of the area as compensation might not cover the cost of the new houses. 

Haringey claims the plan – which is expected to be subject to a judicial review – is the best way to regenerate estates and build thousands of new homes.

It has promised that council tenants would have a right to return on equal terms and that 40 per cent of the first new homes would be “affordable”, pegged to average earnings.

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