London Set To Elect A Muslim Mayor


A former government minister and son of a bus driver from Pakistan, Sadiq Khan, is favorite to beat Zac Goldsmith in the race to run the city of London. Mayor Boris Johnson is expected to be replaced after serving two full terms in the on-going polls. Sadiq Khan has already been forced to deny support for Islamic extremists.

The vote comes just two months before the United Kingdom goes to vote again as to whether the country should remain in the European Union. Results are expected on Friday, 6th May. If Sadiq Khan wins, London would be the first EU capital with a Muslim mayor. Twelve candidates are standing for mayor of London but polls point to a straight fight between Khan and Goldsmith.

Sadiq Khan and Wife at Polling Station

Sadiq Khan was born on 8 October, 1970 to a bus driver and a seamstress. He studied Law at the University of North London. As a practicing lawyer, he specialized in employment discrimination, police brutality, civil rights and other social justice issues. He was elected to the local council in Wandsworth at the age of 23. He became member of the British Parliament for Tooting, South London in 2005. Between 2009 and 2010, he served under Gordon Brown as minister for state for transportation.

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He is married to Saadiya Ahmed, a fellow lawyer, who was also born and raised in South London. They have two daughters. He has authored one book: Fairness Not Favours: How to Reconnect with British Muslims (2008). His campaign proposals for the Labour Party include: spurring the construction of new homes and giving Londoners, not overseas investors, the priority in buying them; freezing transportation fares; introducing a one-hour, unlimited-ride bus ticket, intended to help people who use various connections get to work; improving community policing and reducing knife violence (guns in Britain are rare); making cycling safer.

He’s an LGBT rights proponent and a self-proclaimed feminist.