Socialist Worker


Issue No. 2362

Azelle Rodney’s unlawful killing verdict shames Met

I’m delighted at the verdict in Azelle Rodney’s case but it’s a shame it’s taken eight years. 

And we still don’t know who officer E7 is. The police should now reveal his identity and he should be prosecuted. We want to see those responsible for Azelle’s killing brought to justice.

The verdict has had a massive impact but campaigning families are cautious about whether anything will happen now. 

In my cousin Mikey Powell’s case we won a verdict of unlawful killing in 2009. But we are still awaiting the outcome of a second Independent Police Complaints Commission investigation. 

We’re sick of hearing police spokesmen saying that “they are learning lessons”. 

We have to keep on at them. Mikey died ten years ago in September and we’ve kicked aside every legal hurdle that was put in our way.

But there has to be some kind of prosecution.

We also don’t accept that Smiley Culture committed suicide—we don’t accept that the police let Smiley go into the kitchen to make tea. 

His family will want to pursue this and we will extend all the support we can. 

Jimmy Mubenga’s verdict also gives his family an opportunity to pursue the individuals who killed him. Everyone in the United Friends & Families Campaign will do all they can to support the families.  

Tippa NaphtaliUnited Friends & Families Campaign

Don’t just demand an apology. Demand the officer who killed Azelle comes to your house and stands on the doorstep in full view of the press and apologises.

Will those responsible be brought to trial? I have my doubts. They’ll find some corrupt excuse not to do anything. 

At least we know that there are still a few good people in the justice system that will stand up and tell us when the police got it grossly wrong. 

Shaggy Smithon Facebook

Let’s hope Mark Duggan gets the same verdict as Azelle Rodney

Khalid Ghafooron Facebook

How many people have died in custody without their families ever getting justice?

It’s great to see some results for Azelle Rodney and Jimmy Mubenga.

Mick SamuelsNorth London

Thirsty for results

I work at a shopping centre as a cleaner and I have been asking my employer for clean drinking water facilities in our room. 

The first response was to use the water from public toilets or bring in my own.

I went to the area manager to be told to get it from the loading bay in my break. But I work three to four hour shifts so don’t get a break. 

I have been made aware that this happens on lots of other sites like mine. How do I fight to get it changed without losing my job?

Miss Robinson, Lancashire

Give children a sporting chance

The solution to the worsening problem of obesity is free sport. 

My six year old son’s primary school has no playing fields and a small playground. So I have to pay for him to swim and do other sports which costs over £50 a month. 

I can’t easily afford it, but the alternative is almost no organised sport at all.  A private company has taken over his after-school sports clubs charging £4-£5 an hour. 

In the holidays it’s even worse. A football course costs £15 to £20 a day and swimming is £6.50 for an adult and one child.

It’s not surprising that parents and children rely on cheaper entertainment like electronic games. We need free sport for a healthier generation of young people.


Teachers fight racism and homophobia 

Over 50 people came to the NUT union’s regional equality conference—entitled Love Education, Love Music, Hate Racism. 

It was organised by teachers for teachers and others interested in education and Yorkshire Midland NUT funded it. 

Max Hyde and Mandy Hudson from the union spoke alongside Brian Richardson from Unite Against Fascism, children’s author Alan Gibbons and Sarah Williams from the rugby Tackle IT campaign. 

Primary school pupils performed a play promoting equality and challenging discrimination. A student from Tong School in Bradford talked about how they actively challenged homophobia. 

Tong students brought the banner that hangs in their school—“There is no place for homophobia in Tong High School. Bigotry is a Choice, Homosexuality Is Not.”

The workshops on challenging Islamophobia, sexual stereotypes and on models of disability meant everyone came away with lots of resources and ideas to take back to their schools and classrooms.

Sally KincaidLeeds

Imperialism is alive around the world 

Not every South African welcomed the recent visit of US president Barack Obama. 

Anti-Obama protesters highlighted the involvement of the US in other countries. There is bloodshed and thousands upon thousands of people are left as victims. 

Imperialism persists in grooming and supporting reactionaries in all countries and threatens the peace with atomic war. 

The people of the world have to put an end to the aggression and oppression of imperialism. The South Africa Communist Party and Anti-Obama protesters have to develop the struggle against the enemy. 

Strategically we should despise all our enemies, but tactically we should take them all seriously. 

Thabang MasekoYoung Communist League, South Africa

Making sense of Egypt

I hope the Egyptian people are right on this one. I wouldn’t trust these army leaders any further than I could throw them. 

Workers need to be armed to protect the revolution.

John Parringtonon Facebook

I enjoyed your coverage from Egypt. Sameh Naguib is right to say this is a revolution.

These were the biggest demonstrations in world history. I don’t understand how people talk like it was just a military coup.

Danielle MiltonExeter

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood were tyrants just like the dictator they replaced. I would rather the military.

But a violent backlash from the Brotherhood’s members, and the army’s clampdown against them, has me worried.

I hope the inspiring revolution won’t descend into violence.

Tim ThomasSouth London

Toffs give us pennies

Sending kids born on the same day as William and Kate’s baby a silver penny is just patronising. 

When more and more parents and kids are relying on foodbanks just to survive, it’s insulting too. 

Let’s abolish the royal family and the farce of the monarchy. 

Graeme KempShropshire

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Article information

Tue 16 Jul 2013, 17:51 BST
Issue No. 2362
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