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Labour IT glitch over leadership race fixed

By Rebecca Black

A technical blip which led Labour supporters in Northern Ireland to believe they could not vote in the forthcoming leadership race has been fixed.

Labour members here have been able to register to vote in the leadership election, but those trying to register as a supporter in order to vote had been told they were not eligible.

A Labour Party spokesman explained the situation as being due to slight differences in the electoral register in Northern Ireland, compared to the equivalent in England, Scotland and Wales.

Supporters in Britain were able to register their details with the Labour Party IT system which automatically checked their details with the electoral register.

The system was not able to connect with the Northern Ireland version, so now all applications are being checked manually.

Brigitte Anton, Vice Chair Membership of Labour in Northern Ireland, said she has received a number of complaints from people.

She said it was the latest incident which felt like a slight to Labour supporters here.

"It is just another thing that is so typical for us as Labour supporters in Northern Ireland, feeling unequal or rejected," she said.

"Many people in Northern Ireland are particularly interested because Andy Burnham has spoken about running candidates here."

A Labour Party spokesperson said: "All applications to join the Labour Party as a member or supporter are verified against the electoral register.

"If an applicant is on the electoral register in Northern Ireland and passes Labour's verification process, then they will be able to have their say."

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