Ken Livingstone has told his Leftwing supporters in City Hall to hang on in there, however unpleasant it may be working for a Tory Mayor such as Boris Johnson, because he intends to be back in 2012.
Among those who probably will not be able to survive the regime change at City Hall is the Lokahi Foundation, an outfit with extremist Islamist links that boasts academic Tariq Ramadan as a leading light.
Almost half a million pounds of council taxpayers’ money was handed over to its coffers under Ken. “The funding agreement ran out in July 2008 and I understand that all payments have been made,” says a City Hall spokesman.
Ramadan, Lokahi’s “Senior Research Fellow”, sparked controversy in the mayoral elections by signing a letter urging Muslims to vote for Livingstone without declaring the £450,000 his organisation had been paid by the then Mayor. He has been denied entry to the United States in the past because of allegations concerning his terrorist sympathies.
“Our funding has run out from the Greater London Authority,” Lokahi’s director, Gwen Griffith-Dickson, tells me. “There might be a problem about Tariq Ramadan’s personal letter urging people to vote for Ken Livingstone and the tug of war over some of his comments but he is one of a team.”