Monday, 15 March 2010
Ashok Kumar MP
has died "suddenly and accidentally" at home. I knew Ashok, we were not close personally but we were together on a trip to Botswana I think it was and we had some long chats. I found him personable and good company. He talked about his work before he went into Parliament for Black Sections within the Labour Party and he told me he was against ethnic minority short lists for selection, pointing out that his constituency on Teesside was one of the whitest in the country, but that the party had had no problem selecting him, nor had the Labour vote diminished as a result. I have no idea what kind of accident it was, or what his personal or family situation was, but I am very sorry. We are too close to the general election now for there to be a by-election, but, oh dear. Just wait for the poison mongers to start. They always do. Ashok was only 53.