Tessa Jowell says Tories' all-male London mayor list is 'extraordinary'

Man And Muscles

Tessa Jowell, the favourite for the Labour nomination for London mayor, has criticised the Conservative shortlist for the post for not including any women.

The all-male list announced on Saturday named four in the contest to succeed Boris Johnson next year. They are Zac Goldsmith, Andrew Boff, Syed Kamall and Stephen Greenhalgh.

Goldsmith is widely regarded in the party as having the best hope of retaining the post for the Tories, but is a controversial figure for his strong opposition to the expansion of Heathrow airport and his Eurosceptic stance.

Former footballer Sol Campbell missed out on his bid to be chosen as the Conservative candidate.

Commenting on the list, Jowell said: “It is extraordinary that Tory central office believe that they have no women who are fit even to be considered to be their candidate for mayor of London.

“London is a modern, open city built on diversity, it’s time the Conservatives caught up.”

Westminster city council leader Philippa Roe and businessman Ivan Massow also failed to make the cut.

Official hustings will be held before September’s open primary, in which anyone on the electoral register can vote. The Conservative candidate will be announced at the end of that month.

London regional chairman Ian Twinn said: “We have four excellent candidates who will now campaign across London over the summer before all Londoners will get the opportunity to vote in our primary in September.”

Conservative party deputy chairman Robert Halfon MP said: “The Conservatives are once again putting the power in the hands of all Londoners to help us choose our candidate.

“Under Boris we have seen record investment in our capital and all of this will be put at risk from a Labour party only offering more borrowing, more spending and higher taxes.”

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Lin Jenkins, for theguardian.com on Saturday 25th July 2015 19.29 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010