Sadiq Khan Becomes London's First Muslim Mayor

 

Labour Member of Parliament Sadiq Khan has been elected the new mayor of London with a stunning 57% of the popular vote. The 45-year-old Khan is the son of a Pakistani bus driver and the first Muslim leader of a large western city. He will succeed Boris Johnson, a Conservative who became mayor in 2008.

In his first speech after election Khan promised to be mayor of all Londoners and to unite citizens of all religions. In the campaign, Khan's Conservative opponent Zac Goldsmith tried to discredit him by claiming he was friendly to Islamic terrorists.

Sadiq Khan, a liberal social democrat,  said he would tackle the major problems of the city, like housingpublic transport and pollution. He also promised to make Oxford Street , one of the main shopping streets of the British capital, a car-free zone.

Sadiq Khan had been a human rights lawyer before he was elected to parliament in 2005. In 2008, he became transport minister in Gordon Brown's cabinet.

 

London is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world.  25% of all Londoners were born outside the UK  and about 12% are Muslims.

 

Sadiq Khan - London's Muslim Mayor

Sadiq Khan - London's new mayor - Image: Steve Punter

 

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Words

  • cabinet = group of important people in a government who make most of the decisions ; they are led by the Prime Minister
  • capital = most important city in a country; where the government is
  • citizen = person who lives in a city or country and has rights there
  • claim = to say that something is true
  • cosmopolitan = with people from many different parts of the world and many social backgrounds
  • discredit = to say wrong and bad things about a person even if they are not true
  • elect = to choose someone for a top position in government or an organisation
  • housing = building places for people to live in
  • human rights = the basic rights that everyone should have, like the right to vote or say what you want
  • lawyer = person who gives advice about the law or defends people in court
  • mayor = person who is elected to govern a city or town
  • opponent = here: person from another party who also wanted to become mayor
  • popular vote = here: all the votes from the citizens of the city
  • promise = to say what you will do in the future
  • public transport = buses, trains, subways etc.. that can be used by all people
  • stunning = surprising
  • succeed = here: take the job after someone else
  • tackle = try to solve a problem
  • unite = bring together