AFZAL QUITS AS BIRMINGHAM LORD MAYOR ELECT
As reported in the Chamberlain Files
MUHAMMAD AFZAL QUITS AS BIRMINGHAM LORD MAYOR ELECT
The political career of veteran city Councillor Muhammad Afzal is in tatters after he decided to withdraw his nomination as the next Lord Mayor of Birmingham, blaming “rumour and innuendo” in the media following a speech he made at an anti-racism rally.
Cllr Afzal stepped down as Lord Mayor elect shortly before a Labour group meeting that would almost certainly have reversed his nomination. He paid the ultimate price for ill-advised comments at a Stand up to Racism rally at the Birmingham Central Mosque, where he is the chairman, and for his insistence after a storm of criticism that he had done nothing wrong.
According to the Birmingham Mail, which taped and reported his remarks, Cllr Afzal accused the Prime Minister of being an Islamophobe, described aspects of the Prevent counter-terror programme as racist and cast doubt on Government claims that 500 Muslims have fled the UK to join Isis.
He was also embroiled in a separate row regarding a meeting he held in December with Shaista Gohir, from the Muslim Women’s Network, at which he was accused of seeking to minimise the issue of domestic abuse suggesting it was largely a problem among Christian families because of alcohol consumption, and was said to have claimed forced marriage is not a problem in the Muslim community.
Cllr Afzal spent much of the past week attempting to shore up his position, claiming that his comments were misreported by the Birmingham Mail and he was actually a staunch supporter of Prevent.
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Download The Chamberlain Files 4th Feb 2016
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