Letter to Editor: Lib Dems make commitment to Harlow residents over NHS services

Elections / Wed 29th May 2024 at 09:47am

Dear Editor,

WITHIN a week of the PM calling a General Election (to be held on 4th July), the Liberal Democrats have put forward proposals which will positively impact the residents of Harlow and our surrounding villages.

Practical policies including an increase in local dentists, restoring proper community policing where officers are visible on our street, and securing 8,000 more GPs so residents can get an appointment within a week. There will be more new practical commitments and more details as the manifesto is released – all fully costed and fully funded. This will allow Harlow’s residents to have a detailed look at our offering and enable independent-minded voters to have a clear choice of candidate who can make a real difference.

This election is not just about how people have felt over the past 14 years under a Conservative government, but also about our future; and if the Labour party can really offer them solutions for the next 14 years.

Everybody knows the Liberal Democrats in Harlow are the underdog, fighting two big beasts. However, I am convinced that many traditional Conservative voters cannot believe what their party has become, but cannot bring themselves to vote Labour – and I would ask them to be bold and lend me their vote.

I also recognise that many Labour voters are fed up with the trajectory of their party but cannot bring themselves to vote Conservative – and I would ask them to be just as bold. The reality is that most voters are in the centre ground of politics, not right or left, and we, the Liberal Democrats, are already there.

I also ask the voters of Harlow to be brave, embrace change, and give their vote to a fresh new MP. Collectively, we can turn the page after 50 years of the two big parties taking their votes for granted.

I am determined to put the residents of Harlow at the centre of my decisions, and ensure things get done here, working with stakeholders to improve the lives of hard-working individuals, families and communities. But this can only happen if Harlow voters put their faith in an underdog.

Riad Mannan

Liberal Democrat Candidate for Harlow and the Villages

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13 Comments for Letter to Editor: Lib Dems make commitment to Harlow residents over NHS services:

2024-05-29 12:05:54

Kindly explain how these commitments will be "Fully costed and Fully funded" so we as the electorate can make an informed choice

Riad Mannan
2024-05-29 12:21:55

Fair question Pedro - in the Manifesto to be launched soon, there will be a budget detailing where the money is coming from for each of the spending commitments. This is true for all the parties, so anyone can compare and contrast.

James Gamble
2024-05-29 20:02:16

A pledge like the one in 2010 not to raise university fees?

Mark Gough
2024-05-29 23:26:30

Based on exactly what James Gamble says, you can't trust a Lib.Dem. - neither Liberal, nor Democratic. Remember they were the Remain Party after the Brexit vote too. It's impossible to secure 8,000 more GPs without committing to scrap the cap of 10k on Medical School places. Where are the dentists going to come from? Are you going scrap Tuition fees for these courses Riad? (Lol) And where are the Police coming from? Once you've got them here in Essex, what are you going to do to stop them deserting and going to the Met the minute their training finishes? Mark Gough -Leader Harlow UKIP

Riad Mannan
2024-05-30 11:52:01

James - You may be asking a rhetorical question but let me address it here directly because its been asked of me on this platform elsewhere. Its is important to remember that tuition fees came in under Labour in 1998. The Liberal Democrats went into the 2010 election pledging to abolish it. We went into a coalition with the Conservatives (who did not want to abolish it, but rather increase the fees) and after the Browne review, which raised the cap to £9,000, the Conservative Government pushed the legislation through (and yes it was with the support of the LibDems). On reflection, we should not have gone into the election promising something that could not be kept in a Coalition. The LibDems apologised for this in 2012. You may not like it, but I’ve tried to give an honest answer. We have said Sorry. On the bigger issue, I don’t think either Conservative or Labour is committing to scrapping tuition fees yet. If they do, they will have to say where the money is coming from. Kier Starmer did say so before he got elected leader, but not now. Certainly different funding models should be looked at because how we fund further and higher education is important, not just for students, but for the tax payer.

Riad Mannan
2024-05-30 11:57:10

Mark - I have to say, whilst I appreciate all the attention you give me and your comments on everything I write, sooner or later you will have to say what the UKIP party will do on any given policy area. I am not going to comment directly to each of your questions, you will have to wait for the Manifesto and I'd be happy to compare ours with yours then.

Mark Gough
2024-05-30 14:26:11

Simple Road. We have had a manesto available on our website for months. In fact we get a pocket version when we join the party. Ask anything you like. Mark Gough -Leader Harlow UKIP

Riad Mannan
2024-05-30 14:49:56

Perfect Mark, thank you - will have a chat soon about policies etc.

2024-05-31 17:17:35

Riad. You talk a good fight , the other major parties say practically the same thing, more doctors , dentist , police ,etc. But talk is cheap , and it will be the same as all elections in the past bar one. It will always be Labour or Conservative. But good luck you will need it.

Riad Mannan
2024-06-01 14:44:54

Thank Eddie. But I have to say that it is a disservice to the thousands of people in Harlow who do not want to vote for Labour or Conservative to frame it as a two-horse race. All I am suggesting is that there are other options available. I agree talk is cheap, because in the last 14 years, whist the Conservative government promised much, and talked a good game, there have presided over untold damage done to the NHS, to our town centres, to schools, dental care and our waterways to name but a few. Maybe some Conservative supporters want to give an underdog from a smaller party their vote - because they won't vote Labour.

David Forman
2024-06-03 23:02:47

I have to say Riad Mannan maintains his composure even when goaded and politely answers the questions. I wish more politicians would do this.

Tony Wiseman
2024-06-04 14:25:51

Riad also came across very well in his video interview with YH, much better than the other candidates and as we have seen he responds to the questions posed to him via YH. He is looking like the strongest candidate so far but I have still not decided which way to vote.

Riad Mannan
2024-06-09 22:03:33

Thank you David and Tony. Sorry I didn't see this till now. My role is to demonstrate Liberal Democrat policies and to bring them to life in terms of what these policies mean for the people in Harlow. I hope I am doing some justice to that. But I recognise we are up against major parties with an army of people behind them, so it is tough, no question. I am the underdog, but it is also very worthwhile to put that option in front of people.

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