Page last updated at 14:32 GMT, Tuesday, 4 May 2010 15:32 UK

Election 2010: Brown worst PM says Labour candidate

Labour candidate Manish Sood and minister Douglas Alexander on Gordon Brown

A Labour candidate has launched a personal attack on Gordon Brown, saying he is "the worst prime minister we have had in this country".

Manish Sood, who is standing in North West Norfolk, added that Mr Brown was a "disgrace".

Mr Sood called Labour ministers "corrupt" and said the party had allowed immigration to get too high.

Labour said Mr Sood's remarks were "dreadful" and the latest in a series of "bizarre comments" he has made.

The party has not suspended him, so as things stand his name will still be on the ballot paper for Labour.

'Owes apology'

Mr Sood had been speaking to a local newspaper, Lynn News.

He went on to say the prime minister "owes an apology to the people and the Queen".

Manish has been divorced from this campaign for some time
David Collis
Chairman of North West Norfolk Constituency Labour Party

Mr Sood, who is a Labour councillor in Leicester, later told the BBC News Channel that he stood by his comments.

"What he [Gordon Brown] is doing is basically making things worse and worse," said Mr Sood.

"At the end of the day if he can't do the job properly, he should give it to someone else…it is as simple as that."

Mr Sood claimed that some Labour activists in his constituency would be "happy" with his comments, because they were "fed up" with the current situation in the party.

"Those who are obviously staunch supporters of Gordon Brown will feel affected, but those who want to change and those who believe in true social moral values are obviously on my side," Mr Sood added.

David Collis, chairman of North West Norfolk Constituency Labour Party, said Mr Sood did not represent their views.

"Manish has been divorced from this campaign for some time, but clearly determined to get as much attention for himself as possible," said Mr Collis.

"Despite having such a dreadful candidate, loyal Labour members will continue to put the case for Gordon Brown as the best man to take Britain forward."

He added: "We are fully in support of Gordon Brown as leader of our party and of the excellent campaign he is running."

'Desperation'

A Labour source told the BBC that the party had tried in the past to deselect Mr Sood, but the attempt to move him out of the constituency had foundered on a technicality.

Speaking on the BBC's Daily Politics show, Labour's Douglas Alexander said Mr Sood's comments were "very eccentric and bizarre".

"These views won't distract us from the job in hand," he said.

Meanwhile, Justice Secretary Jack Straw told BBC Radio 4's World at One that Mr Sood's statements were "completely maverick".

"You get maverick actions by Conservatives as well...you get this at any election."

Ed Davey, the Lib Dems' chief of staff, said Mr Sood's comments were "quite amazing".

"This will add to the desperation in the Labour camp," he added.

Mr Sood's mother, Manjula Sood, also a Labour councillor in Leicester, said: "My late husband gave his life to the Labour Party and my loyalty is to the party and to what Gordon Brown has done for the country.

"My son holds his own views but I'm very angry about this and very angry with him."

The constituency of North West Norfolk was won in 2005 by Conservative candidate Henry Bellingham who is standing again, with 49.9% of the vote.

The full list of candidates in Norfolk North West is as follows:

Henry Bellingham - Conservative

David Fleming - British National Party

John Gray - UK Independence Party

Manish Sood - Labour

William Summers - Liberal Democrat

Michael de Whalley - Green



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