The North of Tyne mayor and four councillors have refused to sign a statement condemning a disgraced former Labour colleague who has been jailed for stalking.

Dipu Ahad, an ex-Labour councillor in the West End of Newcastle, was sentenced to 14 months behind bars on Thursday.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how the 41-year-old had used his position to portray himself as a “knight in shining armour” trying to help a woman who was a stalking victim, when he was in fact the person responsible for her misery.

In a statement issued on Friday evening, more than 60 Newcastle Labour elected representatives and candidates said they “place on record our solidarity and support for his victim and condemn unconditionally the callous actions of Dipu Ahad”.

Figures who put their names to the statement included MPs Chi Onwurah and Catherine McKinnell, Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Kim McGuinness, and city council leader Nick Forbes.

However, North of Tyne mayor Jamie Driscoll and four Newcastle Labour councillors did not sign it.

Mr Driscoll’s office confirmed that the mayor was asked to sign up to the statement but declined, and did not offer any further comment.

Newcastle East MP Nick Brown’s name was also absent. When contacted by the Local Democracy Reporting Service on Saturday, Mr Brown said he was unaware of the statement.

Sitting city councillors Ann Schofield, Lara Ellis, Shumel Rahman, and Rebecca Shatwell also did not sign.

Every other Labour councillor or candidate in the city put their name to the statement.

Coun Schofield and Coun Ellis both said they did not wish to comment when asked by the Local Democracy Reporting Service to explain why they did not sign the letter.

Attempts were made to contact Coun Rahman and Coun Shatwell, who have not responded.

The Newcastle Labour statement said: “As Labour elected representatives and candidates in the forthcoming local elections, we place on record our solidarity and support for his victim and condemn unconditionally the callous actions of Dipu Ahad. 

“We praise the victim for her sustained courage in speaking out against a powerful figure in the city. 

“We also condemn his late guilty plea for aggravated stalking which, because of the prospect of a trial, added considerably to the stress and pressure on his victim. 

“We are appalled by the misogyny and hate that was spread by some about her and believe that lessons need to be learned about why a victim of such appalling crimes was not only disbelieved, but openly challenged by some within the community. 

“We are proud to sign up to the White Ribbon campaign and will do everything we can to ensure that all victims of abuse, harassment and hate crimes are given the dignity, respect and support they deserve.”

Ahad represented the Elswick ward from 2007 until 2020, when he was stripped of his seat after failing to attend a council meeting for six months.

He pleaded guilty to stalking this February and was sentenced this week to 14 months in prison and made subject to an indefinite restraining order.

Judge Amanda Rippon said that the former Elswick councillor was “craving the attention he got” while pretending to support the victim and had “demolished her peace of mind and life”.