New Delhi: Indian-origin British MP Lisa Nandy has become the fourth candidate to throw her hat to become the next leader of the Labour Party, after Jeremy Corbyn quit the post following the Labour’s crushing defeat at the hands of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party in the general election held last month.
Other candidates to have officially launched their bid to succeed Corbyn are Clive Lewis, Jess Phillips and Emily Thornberry. In the general election, the Conservatives won a resounding mandate with 365 seats in the 65-seat British House of Commons, while the Labour recorded its worst result for nearly a century, winning just 202 seats.
Writing in The Guardian as well as the Wigan Post, the Manchester-born 40-year-old Nandy urged her party members to ‘change course’ to avoid becoming ‘irrelevant’ in the wake of the party’s heavy defeat. The MP from Wigan further vowed to bring back to Labour, voters who had deserted it in its traditional strongholds. The former shadow Energy Secretary further labelled the drubbing at the hands of the Conservatives as ‘long time coming.
Presenting her case, she added that the next leader of Labour should be from those areas which feel ‘neglected’ and are hence turning away from the party. “It’s been 14 years since we last won power and I want you to understand that we have one chance to win back the trust of people of Wigan, Workington and Wrexham. Without what we were once our labour heartlands we will never win power in Westminster and help to build the country we know we can be,” she wrote.
Arguing that the next Labour leader should be up for a ‘scrap,’ Nandy said that she was ‘determined to defeat Boris Johnson and lead the compassionate, radical, dynamic government I firmly believe you want and deserve.’
Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee (NEC) will on Monday meet to set a timetable for the leadership campaign, which, it is said, will be completed only by the end of March.