The Mayor of London needs to come clean over his stance on the Government’s plan to extend the so-called right to buy to housing association tenants.

This policy will be extremely expensive and, according to housing associations themselves, it will be undermining the viability of the whole housing association sector, putting the delivery of new affordable homes at serious risk.

Each such home sold in London will require a public subsidy to the new home owner of more than £100,000 and the Institute of Fiscal Studies puts the national price tag at almost £12bn pounds over the next five years.

This is money that could instead be used to build new affordable homes.

It is time for Boris Johnson to decide whether he will stand up for the needs of Londoners or simply be a backbench poodle of the Government – voting fodder for whatever barmy scheme it puts forward.

The Mayor’s number one housing priority should be delivering more affordable homes, not defending illthought out plans from the Conservative Party central office.

Liberal Democrat London Assembly housing spokesman