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Haringey's new leader confident in administration

MOVING FORWARD: Joseph Eijiofor

JOSEPH EIJIOFOR, Haringey's new leader, has said he is confident his administration can deliver on its manifesto commitments against a backdrop of ongoing austerity.

Eijiofor was elected local leader of the Labour group in May, replacing Claire Kober who quit amid a row over a controversial project known as the Haringey Development Vehicle (HDV).

He was official sworn in as leader on May 24 and has since met with Sadiq Khan to lobby for more support for social housing in Tottenham, met with community members and leaders plus more.

TEAM UP: Joseph Eijiofor and Sadiq Khan

In recent comments, Cllr Ejiofor said the Labour-run council would be able to deliver the “vast majority” of its 46 election pledges with the resources currently at its disposal.

The council has already been forced to make savings of £160 million in response to a real-terms funding cut of 40 per cent since 2010 – and further reductions are on the way, according to Enfield Independent.

Speaking to the Enfield Independent, he said: “We believe we can deliver the vast majority of commitments with the resources as they are at the moment.

“I am sure we will need to redesign and repurpose services in some particular cases.

“If you invest early on, you save money because you don’t have to invest later. There is going to be a situation where we have to spend a little bit more in the short term.

“One of the health things we want to do is find more money from partners and persuade them that the preventative end of the agenda is something they should invest in alongside us.

“On crime and community safety, we want to persuade Mopac [the mayor’s office of policing and crime] to invest more in community engagement and reoffending prevention. By investing more there, we do not have to spend money later on.”

He added: “I don’t perceive this Conservative government as being particularly bloody-minded. I think they are as interested in improving ordinary people’s lives as we are.

“I would like to think they don’t want us to fail for political reasons but would be prepared to take on board and do things differently, and if we succeed, this could be a model for local authorities going forward.”

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