The Next PM of Britain?

Sir Keir Starmer is a Prime Minister in waiting. Professor Kishan Devani BEM explains his decision to support Sir Keir and the Labour Party

It was reported this week a Tory MP complained the country is worse than 14 years ago when the Tories were first elected. I feel the same and could not disagree with this. It is evident there is only one person in this contest who looks like a Prime Minister, & sounds like a Prime Minister and that is of course the Rt Hon Sir Keir Starmer.

Like many business people, I put my trust in the Tories in 2010. I campaigned for the Tories. I even tried to get elected as a Conservative MP in Leicester as the youngest person of asian heritage to ever do so in the Party’s history (at the time), GLA Member in London and I served as Deputy Chairman of the London Conservatives (again at the time the youngest person of Asian heritage to ever do so).

But I – like thousands of others in the business community – have concluded that rather than renewal, the Tories have given us decline. Economic incompetence landed us with rising mortgages and Rishi Sunak’s punishing 25 tax rises.

The business community knows we need growth and a serious plan to provide workers with skills so we can compete. Instead, we’ve had Tory MPs blocking much-needed planning reforms and an abject failure to support the huge numbers of ‘economically inactive’ back to work. The British Asian community are entrepreneurial and aspirational – we need a government and a leader that will support us – currently, we have the opposite. A government led by Keir has a definitive ambitious plan for our economy and businesses, more than anything else they will give us the stability we so desperately currently need in the Business sector.  

The NHS which is the lifeline of so many of us (and has personally saved the lives of my family and I) has been driven into the ground. Waiting lists for treatment at record levels, desperately worried patients waiting too long for cancer diagnosis and treatment. So many parents I know feel helpless battling the system in an attempt to get some mental health care for their teenage children.

Sir Keir Starmer with Professor Kishan Devani BEM

After 14 years it’s time for change. Keir Starmer has changed the Labour Party. He is  a Prime Minister in waiting with a plan in command of events. In contrast, Rishi Sunak – and it gives me no pleasure to say this as I even campaigned with Sunak in the 2015 election – looks weak, gets pushed around by hardliners on his backbenches and is simply out of his depth. What struck me the most having met and campaigned with and for the last 4 Tory PMs (Sunak, Johnson, May and Cameron) – is Keir Starmer’s humility, passion and commitment to making Britain a better more prosperous place for all. Something which makes him unique in this race to be our next PM and why I certainly want to see him and his team in Number 10!

Starmer’s background is impressive & aspirational. As a clever child, he went to a selective state school, rather than a private school like so many at the top of British politics. Unlike many of his counterparts, he got an undergraduate degree in law at the University of Leeds, rather than studying politics or economics at Oxford or Cambridge. He became a successful lawyer, eventually rising to one of the top legal positions in the country: Director of Public Prosecutions. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2014 for “services to law and criminal justice.” His background appeals to British voters, he is a serious man of integrity – in stark contrast to the Conservative leaders of recent years.

The top team around Keir – Rachel Reeves, Wes Streeting, Yvette Cooper, my old Leicester friend Jonathan Ashworth are a serious credible government in waiting – as well as a formidable shadow ministerial team with figures such as Andrew Gwynne, Bill Esterson, Seema Malhotra, & Stephen Kinnock to mention a few!

The next general election the British Asian community will be saying it’s time for change. Like me they will be saying it’s time for Keir Starmer and Labour.

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