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Thread: 'London needs a black or minority ethnic leader'

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    Default 'London needs a black or minority ethnic leader'

    Margaret Hodge today bowed out of the battle to become London Mayor, with a call for Boris Johnson’s successor to be someone from the city’s black and minority ethnic community.


    In an exclusive interview Barking MP Mrs Hodge, chairman of the Commons Public Accounts Committee, signalled that she will back either ex-minister David Lammy or shadow London minister Sadiq Khan.


    Explaining her decision to quit the race, she said she wanted to build on her experience as a combative PAC chairman — and hinted she would like a role under a Labour government cutting waste or hammering tax-avoiders.


    “It is a positive decision that I want to stay here,” she said in her splendid Commons office. “I have built up so much knowledge and experience, particularly in the last four or five years. I want to use all of that. I have learned so much about making public bodies work better, and getting good value for money, it would be crazy not to build on it.”


    Asked if she would throw her weight behind another candidate for mayor in 2016, Mrs Hodge, 70, firmly said it was time London had a mayor who reflected the city’s diversity.


    “I actually think the time is right for us to have a non-white mayor,” she said, effectively ruling out frontrunner Dame Tessa Jowell. “London is a diverse city but we are poor at representation. But let’s wait and see what the candidates say they can do for London.”


    Mrs Hodge was candid in her assessment of Labour’s three black or minority ethnic potential candidates for mayor.


    She said Mr Lammy was “a really important symbol” of modern London and had “an important back-story to tell”. Mr Khan, the first Muslim to attend Cabinet, was “an assertive fighter” who also had “a good story to tell”. She described Diane Abbott as a “feisty woman, but I think she is the most distant from my own politics”. Of the other leading candidates, Dame Tessa had been “incredibly successful at delivering the Olympics” and would be a “good consensual advocate for London”.

    London needs a black or minority ethnic leader, says Margaret Hodge as she bows out of mayoral race - Mayor - News - London Evening Standard

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    Default Re: 'London needs a black or minority ethnic leader'

    It needs someone who will be good at the job, their race doesn't come into it.

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