A SCOTTISH Labour candidate in the most recent Holyrood elections has quit the party – accusing Keir Starmer of looking to “entrench many aspects of [the] Conservative rule which he purports to oppose”.

Writing for the Heckle online magazine, Owen Wright savagely attacked the Labour Party under Starmer, claiming it was guilty of “deceptive political practices and [an] increasing propensity to indulge in far-right rhetoric and dog-whistles”.

Wright, who stood for Scottish Labour in the 2021 Holyrood elections in the Dundee City East constituency, said he had resigned his membership in November 2022.

“Starmer’s Labour party is not a party worth fighting for,” he wrote.

Wright spelled out his reasoning for quitting the party in a lengthy article for Heckle on Friday.

“A number of things led to the ‘breaking of the camel’s back’,” he wrote, pointing to what he called the “ghost of Ukip” within Labour, “transphobia”, and elements in the left of the party showing a willingness to take Vladimir Putin’s side over the war in Ukraine.

Wright also took aim at Starmer for a “duplicitous” series of promises made during his campaign to take over as Labour leader.

Examples – all of which Starmer has since ditched – included a pledge to nationalise railways, Royal Mail, energy, and water, another to increase income tax for top earners, and a promise to scrap tuition fees.

Wright said: “All in all, it’s very easy to simply observe reasons to not trust Sir Keir Starmer. He has lied about his person, his intentions, and continues to present policies in a duplicitous fashion.

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“How is this man any better in terms of fostering trust in politics than someone like Boris Johnson, who did very much of the same?

“How could I, as a Labour member, be honest about my party’s policies to people at the doorstep when not even the party leader seems to ever be? The answer, to me, is that I could not.”

The former Labour candidate further criticised the party’s approach to immigration, accusing it of a “shameful surrender” to the anti-migrant politics put forward by Nigel Farage’s Ukip and the Tory Party.

“The ghost of Ukip sits well in the Labour party and, with Starmer at the helm, it will haunt and poison our politics for the decade to come,” Wright argued.

He also hit out at the party’s position on trans rights, accusing Labour of a “failure to defend one of the most marginalised groups in British society”.

The National: Boris Johnson (right) with the leader of the Labour Party Sir Keir Starmer (Toby Melville/PA)

Wright said Labour had tried “to distance itself from trans issues generally, citing the toxicity of the ‘debate’ and its unattractiveness to the general public, which alone is cowardly”.

Wright concluded his piece by saying: “It took agonising weeks of thought to lead me to the conclusion that the Labour party is no longer the force for good that I thought it was. The only people for whom it is now reliable are those who already have wealth and social and material power.

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“Most of us – no matter the size of our payslip, whether we rely on foodbanks or not, or whether we consider ourselves ‘Labour at heart’ – are not these people. There is no shame in calling Labour out for their abandonment of us.”

Wright lost out in Dundee City East to Shona Robison, who serves as Deputy First Minister in the Scottish Government.

Heckle is an online magazine published by the pro-independence Republican Socialist Platform (RSP). You can find it at heckle.scot.

Labour have been approached for comment.