A COUNCILLOR at the centre of a vote-rigging investigation will not stand for next month's council elections in Blackburn because he wants to spend more time with his family.

Bastwell councillor Mohammed Hussain is still waiting to hear if he is to be charged with any offence relating to a council election in May 2002.

But the man who led the investigation today revealed a decision was imminent and that it could be before this year's council elections on June 10.

Coun Hussain was arrested last June and a police investigation has been completed, but the Crown Prosecution Service has still not decided if charges should be brought.

It is alleged that postal votes, which were available on application during the 2002 election, were misused.

Coun Hussain won the seat for Labour with a 685-vote majority, two years after losing it to the Conservatives.

The Bastwell ward election in May 2002 had a 55 per cent turnout -- the highest in the borough.

Coun Hussain said his decision not to stand was nothing to do with the police investigation. "I have fought three elections and now I want to concentrate on my family," he said, "It has nothing to do with my arrest."

Detective Inspector Neil Hunter said: "The matter is still under review and discussion with the Crown Prosecution Service's specialist lawyer is taking place and a decision is expected imminently in relation to what course of action to follow." Coun Hussain resigned from the Labour Party group and served as an independent councillor last year.