05 Apr A New Leadership Mandate

CLEAR is the most effective, successful and popular cannabis campaign that Britain has ever seen.

More than that, we are now the largest, membership based drug reform group ever in Britain. There are academic thinktanks, charities, pressure groups and various other bodies involved in campaigning but no other group represents real people, both users and non users, with the mandate that CLEAR has.

Of the 731 pages of written evidence to the Home Affairs select committee drugs inquiry, around a third of all the submissions cite CLEAR evidence.

This is a stupendous achievement of which we can all be very proud. We have mobilised people who never before would have considered submitting evidence to a parliamentary committee. We are making change happen.

My leadership has come under sustained attack. There has been a vicious hate campaign of lies, abuse, forgeries and false allegations. Recently, those responsible have also turned on my colleagues, Derek Williams, Jan Wells and Mark Palmer. These brave individuals fight for truth and justice against jealous, ignoble and cowardly bullies. They are champions of the cause.

Those who waste their energy on opposing us rather than campaigning for reform have demonstrated that their real ambition is to hijack CLEAR, just as they tried to hijack our website.

Now is the time for a new leadership mandate. I am calling for a vote of confidence in me.

The vote will take place in about a fortnight’s time. It will be administered by Jan Wells, the party secretary and treasurer. Jan will devise a robust process which will be verifiable and subject to audit by any legitimate outside organisation. It will ensure that all votes are cast by members and that each member can only vote once. Further details will follow.

I stand on my record. I ask you to compare what CLEAR has achieved in the past year against the record of any other group, and particularly against those who are so eager to attack and criticise me.

I am the best man for the job. I ask all members to vote, to endorse my leadership and the policies I stand for. It will not end the hatred and the hypocrisy of those who oppose me but it will mean that we can ignore them and continue our work to end the prohibition of cannabis with renewed strength.