Burnley mayor becomes youngest ever House of Lords opposition peer

Wajid Khan has become the youngest ever opposition peer in the House of Lords after he was nominated by Sir Keir Starmer.

The 41-year-old is a local councillor for Daneshouse and Stoneyholme ward in Burnley and is also the town's youngest ever mayor. He served as an MEP for the North West from 2017 to 2019. While in the European Parliament, he was a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and Human Rights Subcommittee.

Wajid is also a senior lecturer and course leader for the MA in Community Leadership Programme at the University of Central Lancashire, co-authoring both the undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes.

He holds a particular interest in empowering South Asian female mature students to re-engage in Higher Education and who was awarded the Sitara-i-Qaide Azam Award by the president of Pakistan for his work on International Human Rights. He is also a fellow of the prestigious Higher Education Academy.

Wajid said: "This is the greatest honour. It's not something I had even considered but to be put forward as a life peer and to serve in the House of Lords is the pinnacle of my long and varied political career.

"Not only is it a personal honour, but it's also a testament to the support I have had from my family and from the residents of Burnley. This is a very proud day for me. I plan to continue my fight to champion the causes closest to my heart - human rights, workers' rights, gender equality, and climate change."

He added: "I still hold fast to my firm belief that the House of Lords should be an elected chamber but I'm a political 'animal' and, as such, I think it's right that I should accept this honour and continue my fight from within, serving my local community and my country with energy and enthusiasm as I always have."

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