Sadiq Khan in final appeal to London communities

By Toussaint Davy

Making his last pitch to London voters ahead of the closely contested London mayoral elections taking place on on Thursday 2 May, two-time incumbent Mayor Sadiq Khan continued his robust defence of his eight-year record. He also looked forward to a potential historic Labour-run administration in both City Hall and Wesminister by the end of the year.

Seeking a momentous third four-year term, Khan reiterated his well-rehearsed manifesto pledges on a wide range of issues ranging from social housing, child poverty, immigration, knife crime and the extension of his controversial Ultra Low Emissions (ULEZ) charge for outer London.

He reaffirmed his intention that there will be no pay-per-mile charge for vehicles in his next administration.

Mayor Khan, who spoke exclusively to the Brixton Bugle, repeated his direct final call to all communities that make up London to vote for him.

The Mayor said: “I love this city. The idea of continuing to be the mayor of this great city excites me. I have seen the progress that has been made over the last eight years, despite the government. One of the reasons why I love the city is our diversity.

“We have black, white, Muslim, Jewish, Christians Hindus, Sikhs not just tolerating one another but respecting one another,” he said.

He continued: “The Windrush Generation, when they came here, they worked in hospitals, public transport. Their children helped build our city, so we have to remember our history.”

In what has been a campaign marred by accusations of racism – both covert and overt, Khan was particularly scathing in his assessment of his Conservative counterpart, Susan Hall.

Recent polls suggest she will run him to a close second place next week. In an election that he characterises as a “two horse race”, Khan reiterated: “The Tory candidate is somebody who has said comments that I find really offensive. She supports Donald Trump. She’s liked Enoch Powell. Some of her views on race cause me real concern. She’s somebody who, I think, would divide our communities and not bring them together.”

Should he win re-election, Khan aired his concerns with the Bugle ahead of this year’s London Notting Hill Carnival, the world’s largest free event, after the Brazillian carnival in Rio de Janeiro. The annual party attracts up to 2.5 million revellers packed onto West London’s streets for the August bank holiday weekend. “Firstly, I want Carnival to stay where it is in Notting Hill and secondly, I am concerned about safety. I am concerned about the success of Carnival, leading to concerns around safety,” Khan said.

“None of us wants to see, God forbid, a situation that we saw at Hillsborough or at Brixton Academy [Where people died due to being crushed].We have to make sure that we manage the crowds that go to carnival. So, we’re working with the councils, the police and the stewarding companies to make sure that carnival is as safe as it can be.”

He continued: “What we can’t afford to happen is to not address the issues that have been raised last year in particular, where at some points the numbers of people in a confined space was too high.

“It’s really important to manage the crowds. We’ve got crowd control experts advising the organisers of carnival to make sure that the event is as safe as it can be. I do worry about a limited footprint having lots of people that’s why safety is of paramount concern,” he concluded.

The London Mayoral elections take place on Thursday 2 May. For more information visit


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