Lutfur Rahman is Britain's first directly elected Asian mayor.He’s not, of course, Chinese. Or Thai. This is the BBC’s version of ‘Asian’…
On 22 May, he seeks re-election. He says he aspires to the highest standards of transparency and probity and that he welcomes scrutiny. Two weeks ago, on Panorama, we scrutinised the way he's run this most diverse of boroughs.Heh! Extra large box of popcorn all round.
Though I’m finding myself unable to root for either side in this.
Instead of welcoming this, the mayor employed a major City law firm and a PR company at huge public expense to try to get the programme stopped.While the BBC fought back with their lawyers at their viewer’s expense. That’s somehow different, I take it?
I often think how I would feel were I a Muslim in post-9/11 Britain. I suspect that I, too, would feel a sense of victimhood, for Muslims have been under a relentless spotlight.Hmm, sympathy for the BBC is dimming somewhat…
But that should never stop the BBC from raising valid questions about the way a council is run and public money spent. The idea that any BBC programme would be motivated to do this by racism or Islamophobia is unthinkable, as anyone who has worked for the BBC knows.Oh, perish the thought! I’m sure you should, like Caesar’s wife, be considered beyond reproach in that!
OK, I’ve made up my mind. Can they both lose..?