THE LEADER of the council has resigned tonight (Tuesday) prior to a vote of no confidence to oust him.

Cllr Sohail Munawar (Lab, Elliman), who has lead Slough Borough Council for the last 18 months, is currently under investigation by his own party for a porn video sent to other members.

At a meeting at The Curve tonight, Cllr James Swindlehurst, (Lab, Cippenham Green), was elected to replace him with 34 councillors voting in favour and five abstaining. He was the only member to be put forward by the ruling Labour party.

Cllr Sabia Hussain (Lab, Central), the former deputy leader who was recently sacked by Cllr Munawar, has returned to the post once again after being appointed by Cllr Swindlehurst. 

In his resignation speech, Cllr Munawar said the porn allegations had 'torn' his life apart. He said: “I'd like to thank all my colleagues for giving me this chance, over the last 18 months, in leading this town.

"I had a wonderful time, and we had some successes – and some very big successes. We were voted the best place to live and work, and the most productive town.

“I then got suspended over this pornographic video, which has torn my life and family apart. It's put me in a very dark place, something I wouldn't want anybody to go through.

“I am glad the monitoring officer (of Slough Borough Council) has cleared me, but it has left a mark on me, and for that reason I am voluntarily resigning to get my life back.”

Cllr Munawar said Cllr Swindlehurst, had his 'full support'.

Cllr Swindlehurst, upon being elected as leader, admitted he had proven divisive in the past.

He said: “Someone once described me as being like Marmite once, which I take means that 50 per cent of people hate me – but it's been fantastic to have everyone be so supportive of me.

“Me and Cllr Strutton (leader of Tories) have already agreed on several changes that need to be made. There are several issues around transparency that need to be put to bed.”

Cllr Swindlehurst thanked Cllr Munawar for his work, and hoped he would be welcomed back into the Labour Group.

He also announced he would be dismissing the entire cabinet so he may review which councillors hold these positions.

As previously reported by The Observer, Cllr Munawar has always denied deliberately sending the video, before being elected leader, via What's App to his phone contacts. He confirmed in an interview that recipients had included family members, such as his mother.