Unions have too much power warns Labour donor Assem Allam

Hull City chairman Assem Allam
Image caption Hull City chairman Assem Allam is a Labour Party donor

The chairman of Hull City Football Club has warned that trade unions have too much influence over Labour Party policy.

Assem Allam has donated a total of £210,000 to Labour since 2010.

The Egyptian-born businessman said he wanted the party to be less reliant on union funding.

In an interview for Sunday Politics in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, Dr Allam said: "For the Labour Party to rely too heavily on the unions worries me.

"It's undemocratic for one party to rely on one category of the community."

Mr Allam is also critical of Labour's proposal to introduce a so-called 'mansion tax' on properties worth more than £2m.

The Premier League club chairman warned that politicians who target the wealthy with higher taxes were "close to ex-communist countries".

Labour has traditionally relied on the trade unions for up to 90% of its funding.

Union leaders have hit back at claims they have too much influence on Labour policy.

Working people

Yorkshire and Humber regional chairman of the TUC, Tim Roache, said: "Assem Allam and other Labour contributors have got it fundamentally wrong.

"The Labour Party was born out of the trade union moment and not the other way round. The party was formed to give working people a voice in government."

In 2012, Ed Miliband watched a Hull City match as a guest of Mr Allam. He sent his Rolls-Royce to collect the Labour leader from Doncaster.

Asked if Mr Miliband would make a good prime minister, Mr Allam said: "Yes, he's got a good personality to make a good prime minister, but David Cameron also has a good personality."

Dr Allam is currently fighting to change the name of Hull City to Hull Tigers - a move he believes would create a stronger brand to promote overseas.

The proposed name change was initially rejected by the Football Association and is now the subject of arbitration.