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Ken Livingstone: Independent

Cover story; London's Mayor

Rallying call: 'I will fight for the rights of Londoners who don't want a Public Private Partnership for the Tube.'

Background: Greater London Council leader from 1981 until it was disbanded by Margaret Thatcher in 1986. Labour MP for Brent since 1987. Expelled from the Labour Party last week after entering the Mayoral race.

London Underground: Opposed the PPP on the basis that the post privatisation fragmentation of the national rail system has made delays and accidents more commonplace.

Will fight to replace PPP with a 'cheaper' public bond. Pledges to replace the 'dullards' at London Transport with new more cost conscious management. Will use congestion charging revenue to freeze Tube fairs.

Congestion charging: Has been most positive of all the candidates on congestion charging which would 'end a consistent pattern of privilege for car users'. Plans to introduce a paper based scheme by 2002 costing £80M to start up and raising up to £250M a year. He says: 'Nocity of this size has introduced a scheme like this. We will set the charge low initially and build it up.'

Will fight to introduce charges despite mounting public opposition. Predicts ultimate public support. He says: 'Polls are evenly balanced at the moment but I have not the slightest doubt that resistance to congestion charging will build up. Over 80% of Londoners were opposed when I reduced Tube fares at the Greater London Council, but two months later two thirds were in favour.

Buses: Wants to attract more patronage with cleaner buses, more conductors and a freeze on fares. Prefers high speed bus lanes from the outskirts of London into centre.

Strong point: Can point to success of the now legendary 'Fares Fair' policy between 1981 and 1983 when business rates were increased to cut fares on London Transport by 30%. The policy led to a 70% increase in patronage and increased revenue for London Transportby 10%.

Weakness: Has back tracked on congestion charging after saying he would introduce congestion charging in London by August 2001. Now plans to introduce the charges by 'mid term'.

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