Muslim Sadiq Khan has won the contest to become Labour's candidate for the 2016 London mayoral election. He has been chosen as Labour's candidate in the battle to replace Boris Johnson as London Mayor. The left winger – who nominated Jeremy Corbyn for national leader, but supported Andy Burnham – beat Blairite Tessa Jowell to challenge for London Mayor.
He grew up on a south London housing estate and lived in a council house, his father a bus driver in the long standing Islamic tradition fathered eight children.
Khan enjoyed strong support from trade unions, with powerful unions such as Unite and GMB providing essential funds and logistical support. The number of Londoners eligible to vote in party elections tripled in the last few months, from 40,000 to an estimated 125,000. No doubt Sadiq Khan will poll well in the Islamic parts of London around Tower Hamlets and Newham.
The first round of votes under the alternative voting system saw Khan receiving 37.5% of the total vote, with Tessa Jowell on 29.7%, Diane Abbott on 16.8%, David Lammy on 9.4%, Christian Wolmar on 5.4% and Gareth Thomas on 1.2%. Under the voting system, candidates are knocked out and their votes transferred to another candidate until one contender is left with more than 50%.
Khan won 48,152 votes, a 58.9% share, in the fifth round of voting after four other candidates had been eliminated. Ex-minister Tessa Jowell, regarded as the frontrunner going into the contest, came second with 41.1% of the vote ahead of Diane Abbott in third place.
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The Conservatives have run London for more than seven years, with Boris Johnson currently combining the role of London Mayor with that of MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip since his election in May. The Conservative party candidate for London Mayor will be announced on the eve of their annual conference on October 3, with current favourite to replace Boris Johnson being Zac Goldsmith.
So, next May what are the odds London elect its first Muslim Mayor?