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Media banned from Peterborough hustings event chaired by BBC Radio Cambridgeshire presenter

Advance publicity stated it was a ‘public’ meeting

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Media were banned from attending or filming a hustings event in Peterborough today – despite it being chaired by BBC Radio Cambridgeshire presenter Amir Suleman. There was no mention ahead of the hustings that the media would be banned but CambsNews was asked to leave despite minutes earlier told we were welcome so long as “we showed respect for the audience’s privacy”.

Which, of course, we agreed.

We have recorded what happened next. The same official, who had earlier agreed for us to attend the event – at the Gladstone Park Community Centre – then came back to us.

Gladstone Park Community Centre –scene of today’s hustings organised by The Community Exchange Hub, PHOTO: Terry Harris

Gladstone Park Community Centre –scene of today’s hustings organised by The Community Exchange Hub, PHOTO: Terry Harris

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He told us there had been objections from “candidates” but did not dispute it had been a single candidate. He refused to elaborate.

Mr Sulema was described in pre hustings publicity as “accomplished presenter and host since 2008. He is a freelance presenter with BBC Radio Cambridgeshire and also a volunteer radio presenter with Salaam Radio in Peterborough since 2016”.

Advance publicity on social media had stated it was a “public” meeting and open to “anyone on or off Facebook”.

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The hustings had been organised by The Community Exchange Hub, which describes itself as a “new community-focused initiative connecting British Muslim with politics, and the issues that affect the communities in which they live”.

Gladstone Park Community Centre –scene of today’s hustings organised by The Community Exchange Hub, PHOTO: Terry Harris

Gladstone Park Community Centre –scene of today’s hustings organised by The Community Exchange Hub, PHOTO: Terry Harris

“The Community Exchange Hub plans to connect British Muslim communities with candidates standing in this year’s General Election through a series of election hustings in constituencies throughout the country

“The CEH offers a chance for voters to exchange ideas with those seeking election, provides an opportunity for people to engage on the issues that are most important to them and connects politicians with voters in a safe and local space”.

Gladstone Park Community Centre –scene of today’s hustings organised by The Community Exchange Hub, PHOTO: Terry Harris

Gladstone Park Community Centre –scene of today’s hustings organised by The Community Exchange Hub

However, on the day – despite agreeing on arrival with organisers we would not film or photograph any of the audience – it was to emerge later the media was not welcome.

 

 

 

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