LEFT-WING mayoral candidate Valerie Brown, who is standing for the ‘Burning Pink party’, proudly announced her involvement with Extinction Rebellion after being arrested for criminal damage to protest HSBC’s investment in fossil fuels.
The 68-year-old tweeted to confirm that she was at the event, tagging HSBC and telling the bank: “Investing in #FossilFuels is murder. More and more people can see that clearly. Why can’t you?
“We will not stand by whilst you invest in runaway #greed, whilst people’s lives are being shattered by the #fossilfuel industries.”
Brown joined eight other women from Extinction Rebellion and the political party Burning Pink as they headed-out, hammers and chisels in hand, to vandalise the building in London’s Canary Wharf.
After chipping away at the glass windows in front of media film crews, the group splashed the building’s front with stickers reading “£80 billion into fossil fuels in the last 5 years” and waited for police to arrive.
A spokesperson for HSBC said: “We welcome meaningful dialogue on our climate strategy, however, we cannot condone vandalism or actions that put people and property at risk.
“We have an ambition to be net-zero by 2030 and to bring our financed emissions to net-zero by 2050.
“We have also committed to set out short and medium-term transition targets, and to phase out the financing of coal-fired power and thermal coal mining by 2040 globally. We remain committed to supporting our customers in their transition to net-zero.”
Speaking on behalf of the Greater London Returning Officer, a spokesperson confirmed that the arrest bizarrely does not prevent Ms Brown from standing in the upcoming election in May:
“If she were to be charged and convicted of a criminal offence (criminal damage) prior to the election it would not affect her nomination or ability to stand in the election.
“If she were to be elected as Mayor and (prior to the election or any time after election) she was sentenced to imprisonment for at least 3 months without the option of paying a fine, she would be disqualified from holding office as Mayor.”