George Galloway will axe Transport for London bosses and drive popular private hire service application Uber out of London if he is elected to City Hall in May. The controversial measures are just two of the Scottish politician's policies that will apparently make him the "most pro-worker mayor London has ever had".
"It's as well there are Cycle Superhighways because they will be on their bikes looking for work," Galloway told IBTimes UK in an interview at his London house. "The City, the banks and big business don't need a mayor on their side, it's the rest of the people who need a mayor on their side."
But the Respect leader is miles behind Labour nominee Sadiq Khan and Tory hopeful Zac Goldsmith in the opinion polls. The latest YouGov survey for LBC Radio, of more than 1,000 people between 4 and 6 January, put Galloway on just 2%, with Khan 10 points ahead of Goldsmith in the second round of voting (55% versus 45%).
However, despite the dismal data, the former Bradford West MP insisted his experience in politics makes him the most qualified candidate to succeed Boris Johnson.
"I was almost 30 years in parliament, I was prominent in politics when Sadiq Khan was in short trousers and I don't know if they wore short trousers at Zac Goldsmith's fancy school, but you know what I mean," Galloway argued.
The outspoken anti-war activist has made his name more recently railing against New Labour – he was expelled from the party in 2003 – appearing on Celebrity Big Brother in 2006 and, among other things, hosting a show for the Kremlin-backed RT TV station.
The broadcaster wants to give free transport travel to all students in London and will enlist the help of RT colleague Max Keiser, a former stockbroker, to pay for the currently uncosted pledge.
"I don't have access to the books so I can't cost it exactly, but I will say this – it will be paid for by the savings that we will make through block-chain technology," Galloway claimed. "Keiser, who will be my finance and economics tsar, has estimated – it's only an estimate at this stage – that we will save £950m ($1,360m) through that transparency."
Mayor of London candidates
- Zac Goldsmith (Conservative)
- Sadiq Kahn (Labour)
- Sian Berry (Green)
- Caroline Pidgeon (Liberal Democrat)
- Peter Whittle (Ukip)
- George Galloway (Respect)
- Winston McKenzie (English Democrats)
- Paul Golding (Britain First)
- John Zylinski (Independent)
- Rosalind Readhead (Independent)