Ashfield MP vows not to give in to threats
The MP for Ashfield has vowed to continue his work as normal – despite a renewed focus on politician’s safety following the murder of MP Sir David Amess.
Sir David, Conservative MP for Southend West, died after being repeatedly stabbed as he hosted a constituency surgery in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, on Friday.
The Metropolitan Police have since confirmed they are treating his murder as a terrorist incident.
A British man remains in police custody after being arrested on suspicion of Sir David’s murder.
He was the second MP murdered within five-and-a-half-years after Jo Cox, Labour MP for Batley and Spen, was shot and stabbed in Birstall, West Yorkshire, where she had been due to hold a constituency surgery, in June 2016.
Thomas Mair, who held far-right views, was convicted of her murder later that year and jailed for life.
Since Sir David’s murder, Home Secretary Priti Patel has ordered an immediate review of MPs’ security.
A spokesman for her said: “The Home Secretary has asked all police forces to review security arrangements for MPs with immediate effect and will provide updates in due course.”
However, Lee Anderson, Conservative MP for Ashfield, vowed to continue his public duties.
Posting on his Facebook page, he said: “We have all had threats and it’s just something that unfortunately we have to deal with and that’s very sad, I know.
“I try to spend as much time as possible when home visiting as many places as possible and speaking to as many people as possible.
“As well as living and working here I also socialise here.
“This is my home and I am a homegrown MP who was born here, schooled here, worked here and raised a family here.
“When I decided to stand for Parliament I only put my name down for Ashfield, no other seat interested me. It was Ashfield or nothing.
“A small minority of people will not stop me doing a job I love in the constituency.
“I will continue to do my usual duties and do what I love doing. That is meeting, speaking to and helping the people of Ashfield.
“My priority is keeping my staff safe which is why I have CCTV and panic buttons as well as appointment-only surgeries.”