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TV PROGRAMME TO MAKE NEW ALLEGATIONS AGAINST WESTMINSTER COUNCIL

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Allegations that Westminster City Council placed more than 100 homeless families in tower blocks riddled with dange...
Allegations that Westminster City Council placed more than 100 homeless families in tower blocks riddled with dangerous asbestos will be made tonight by the BBC2 television programme Public Eye, report BBC Three Counties and Greater London Radio.

Milton Keynes South-west Conservative MP Barry Legg is former chairman of finance with the authority and one of nine former Westminster councillors already threatened with surcharge over the so-called 'votes for homes' affair.

The case is mentioned in tonight's programme which cites evidence that families were moved to the contaminated flats as part of an alleged gerrymandering strategy designed to keep potential Labour voters out of marginal wards.

Six years before the families were moved in the council had been warned by an environmental health officer that asbestos should be removed as a matter of urgency. A council committee decided it should be stripped away and as tenants moved out most flats were sealed.

But in 1989, alleges the programme, a secret group of councillors decided homeless families should be moved in. Confidential documents obtained by Public Eye suggest the decision was politically influenced to keep potential Labour voters out of marginal wards.

Shirley Porter, council leader at the time, says it is monstrous to suggest that families were knowingly dumped in unsafe buildings.

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