An election leaflet blunder has left Labour red faced and Conservatives fuming.
Campaign material for Labour’s Batley East candidate, Mahmood Akhtar, has been pulled after it accused the Tories of “shi**ing on us to fund tax cuts for the wealthy and giant corporations.”
The foul mouthed statement made it into print and is thought to have been posted through letterboxes at a number of homes in the run up to the Kirklees Council elections on May 3.
Clr Akhtar has been the member for Batley East since 2004 but has always been a back bench councillor.
When asked about the mistake or if he would like to apologise, Clr Akhtar at first declined to comment but later contacted the Examiner.
His election agent, Clr Shabir Pandor, deputy leader of Kirklees Council, told the Examiner the insulting sentence was a “genuine mistake.”
Clr Pandor, who is responsible for running Clr Akhtar’s campaign, declined to reveal who was to blame for the error.
“It would be unfair to blame individuals,” he said.
“No offence was intended and luckily not many have gone out.
“We’ve binned them all and a new batch is being printed.”
When asked how many had been distributed to members of the public, Clr Pandor declined to reveal an actual number.
Clr Pandor also refused to confirm if he had overseen the publication of the leaflet and revealed the ‘Tory Priorities’ graphic had come from Red Labour, a hard left activist group within the party established in 2011.
He added: “I am the agent but that doesn’t mean I wrote it.”
A spokesperson for Batley and Spen Conservatives said: “This leaflet proves that Kirklees Labour is now run by the extreme Left who are propagating lies and abuse.
“This extreme politics is fuelling hate and division in our society and proves that if Corbyn and his mates ever gain power nationally they will turn the venom they used on their political opponents today onto ordinary working people tomorrow.
“If Clr Akhtar has an ounce of decency he will apologise for this leaflet produced in his name and resign as the Labour Party candidate for Batley East.”
Clr Akhtar later contacted the Examiner to say: "I apologise and I am sorry for the mistake. It was a genuine mistake and an oversight has occurred.’’
He said local party figures did not notice the wording and language when producing a graphic downloaded from the internet on the flyer.
He added: ‘’We have completely pulled the leaflet and we immediately ordered a corrected new batch after rectifying the wording.’’