Thursday, August 25

UKIP must learn to tighten the purse strings

Figures published by the Electoral Commission have revealed just how much the main political parties received in financial donations in the crucial run up to the May 5th general election.

Donations from April to June totalled £6,071,637 for the Conservatives compared to £5,803,413 for Labour. The Liberal Democrats trailed with £1,192,191.

The figures however did not make good reading for the UK independence Party. UKIP received donations totalling a relatively small £235,181.

Worryingly for UKIP their main donor was one of its very own MEPs. Graham Booth, UKIP MEP for the south west gave the party £10,232.

Mr Booth's donation was small change compared to the half a million pound the Conservatives received from transport entrepreneur Sir Tom Cowie and the £740,000 the GMB union donated to Labour.

The only shred of comfort for UKIP was that they out raised fellow minnows Veritas by a factor of 10 to 1. The party previously led by Robert Kilroy-Silk saw income of just £23,087.

Despite donations to UKIP totalling £235,181, the party was forced to pick up a bill of £250,000 in the aftermath of their abysmal showing at the ballot box.

UKIP was forced to dole out a quarter of a million pounds in the form of lost deposits on the 451 seats it contested.

UKIP's financial woes have not been without consequence. Only last month did a frustrated UKIP Leeds chairman, Peter Rogers, turn his back on the party after being given a mere £400 to fight the general election campaign.

With a round of by-elections planned for the autumn it looks likely that once again Graham Booth and his UKIP chums will have to have a 'whip round' their offices in Brussels to have any hope of fielding by- election candidates.

Source: epolitix

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