Why I am standing

Britain is a great country, one I have been proud to call home since a Labour government offered me sanctuary here. I was a young refugee, a victim of torture, on the run from the Taliban. British people gave me hope, security, democracy and a future. Now it is my ambition to serve the town of Shrewsbury as a Labour MP, to play my part in our great democracy and help build the better future that this wonderful place deserves. 

It pains me to see what the Tories have done to our country and Shrewsbury. Families should not be forced to choose between heating and eating. Our education system should not be leaving so many children behind. Our NHS should not have been run to the ground. 

Like so many British people, I owe everything to the NHS. It was the health service that helped me recover from the trauma of the torture I suffered at that hands of the Taliban. It was NHS doctors and nurses who saved my life when I collapsed in a motorway service station 100 miles from home. My children were delivered in hospitals that only exist because a Labour government understood that everyone, no matter what their background, deserves to be treated with care and respect.

Britain needs another ambitious Labour government like the one that founded the NHS, and I want to be part of that mission. I joined the party on the same day that I became a British citizen. It is one of the best and proudest decisions of my life. I had arrived in Britain with nothing but the scars from my captivity. Then institutions founded by Labour – like the Open University that gave me a world class education – allowed me to dream of a future, not just for me and my family, but for the wider community that welcomed me as British.

Since then, I have been part of many campaigns to help our party deliver for communities across the country. 

I will be a relentlessly campaigning local MP, dedicated to the people of this town, and also a strong voice for Britain and our values. My personal story, experience in the media, campaigning and working with politicians and organisations at the national and international levels will enable me to attract attention to the area, influence and bring about positive change and investment. 

I want Britain to be the best country to grow up and grow old in. I want our education system to be the best in the world. I want our welfare state to protect those in need. I want our country to regain its international reputation and standing. Our public services should be world class. Fairness and equality must be the cornerstone of our economy. Protecting the environment and fighting climate change must be our collective national mission. 

Britain needs to be rebuilt. It is on us, the Labour Party, just as in 1945, 1964 and 1997, to do it once more. Make it fairer, healthier and happier. I am committed to paying back what I owe our country. Achieving a Labour government is the best way I can do that.

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© 2023 – Roh Yakobi