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(Bristol 247) Debbonaire returns to Labour front bench

Thursday 13 October 2016

Less than three months ago, Bristol West MP Thangham Debbonaire said that her party leader Jeremy Corbyn was "unwilling and unable... to communicate with, listen to or work with anyone outside his narrow group". In July, the Bristol West MP said that Corbyn had appointed and then sacked her without speaking to her, while she was still receiving treatment for breast cancer. Now the former professional cellist has let bygones be bygones after her resignation as shadow culture minister in June following the EU referendum and returned to the shadow front bench as a Labour whip

In a statement released on her website on Wednesday, Debbonaire said that she was delighted to take on her new role, which will see her acting as a communicator between backbenchers and the party leadership and ensuring that Labour MPs turn up to vote in the House of Commons. She said: "My duty will be to serve the whole Labour family. Thanks to Jeremy Corbyn for giving me this opportunity to serve. These are uncertain times and there are real worries about the direction [in which] our country is heading. That makes it crucial that Labour is working as a strong, united team in parliament. We need to be able to effectively hold the government to account."

She added: "In the coming weeks and months we will be fighting for genuine parliamentary oversight of Brexit, opposing Theresa May’s divisive plans for grammar schools and putting pressure on the government over their inaction on Syria and the refugee crisis. I am looking forward to being an active part of that process."


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