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Wednesday July 17, 2024

UK Muslim candidates and key role of Muslim vote in constituencies

Muslims in UK number at around 4 million and their participation in general elections is considered as of crucial importance in many swing seats

By Murtaza Ali Shah
July 05, 2024
From left to right: British Pakistani politicians Khalid Mahmood and Shabana Mahmood from UKs Labour Party, Rehman Chishti from UKs Conservative Party and Zarah Sultana from UKs Labour Party.— UK Parliament/file
From left to right: British Pakistani politicians Khalid Mahmood and Shabana Mahmood from UK's Labour Party, Rehman Chishti from UK's Conservative Party and Zarah Sultana from UK's Labour Party.— UK Parliament/file

LONDON: The British Muslim voters could play a crucial role in around 100 constituencies including a majority of swing seats around the country and a record number of around 300 Muslim prospective parliamentary candidates – most of them Pakistani origin – are contesting elections on July 4 across the country.

The Muslims in the UK number at around four million and their participation in general elections is considered as of crucial importance in many swing seats and also in the traditional Labour safe seats where dynamics have changed this time.

According to projections from YouGov polling conducted from June 11 to 18, following Muslim candidates are likely to win their seats: Apsana Begum (Lab) Poplar & Limehouse, 49%-win margin. Elected 2019; Rosena Allin Khan (Lab) Tooting, 49%-win margin. Elected 2016; Khalid Mahmood (Lab) Birmingham Perry Barr, 44%-win margin. Elected 2001; Imran Hussain (Lab) Bradford East, 43%-win margin. Elected 2015; Rupa Huq (Lab) Ealing Central & Acton, 41%-win margin. Elected 2015; Shabana Mahmood (Lab) Birmingham Ladywood, 39%-win margin. Elected 2010; Abtisam Mohamed (Lab) Sheffield Central, 39%-win margin. Replacing retiring MP; Yasmin Qureshi (Lab) Bolton South & Walkden, 38%-win margin. Elected 2010; Feryal Clark (Lab) Enfield North, hold 38%-win margin. Elected 2019; Tulip Siddiq (Lab) Hampstead & Highgate, 37%-win margin. Elected 2015; Rushanara Ali (Lab) Bethnal Green & Stepney, 32%-win margin. Elected 2010; Naz Shah (Lab) Bradford West, 32%-win margin. Elected 2015; Mohammad Yasin (Lab) Bedford, 31%-win margin. Elected 2017; Tahir Ali (Lab) Birmingham Hall Green & Moseley, 28%-win margin. Elected 2019; Zarah Sultana (Lab) Coventry South, 30%-win margin. Elected 2019; Afzal Khan (Lab) Manchester Rusholme, 27%-win margin. Elected 2017.

According to YouGov as well as other pollsters and their projections, the following candidates, mostly new, could win today’s elections with reasonable margins: Heather Iqbal (Lab) Dewsbury & Batley, 5%-win margin; Zubir Ahmed (Lab) Glasgow Southwest, 14%-win margin; Nus Ghani (Con) Sussex Weald, 1%-win margin. Elected 2015; Sadik Al-Hassan (Lab) North Somerset, 9%-win margin.

The following candidates are likely to win with small margins depending on the voters’ turnout and the last-minute decisions: Saqib Bhatti (Con) Meriden & Solihull East (Con win vs. Lab: 3%-win margin). Elected 2010; Najmul Hussain (Lab) Brigg & Immingham (Con win vs Lab: 3%-win margin); Rufia Ashraf (Lab) South Northamptonshire (Con win vs. Lab: 3%-win margin); Zafran Khan (Lab) Melton & Syston (Lab win vs. Con: 2%-win margin); Sajid Ahmad (Lab), Newark (Lab win vs. Con: 2%-win margin); Yousef Dahmash (Con) Rugby (Lab win vs. Con: 1%-win margin); Maahwish Mirza (Lab) Mid Bedfordshire (Lab win vs. Con: 1%-win margin); Hajira H Piranie (Lab) Harborough, Oadby & Wigston (Lab win vs. Con: 0%-win margin);

According to the pollsters, the following two incumbents could lose their seats: Anum Qaisar (SNP) Airdrie & Shotts (likely Lab: 18%-win margin). Elected 2021; Rehman Chishti (Con) Gillingham & Rainham (lean Lab: 8%-win margin). Elected 2010.

Here is the list of nearly 92 constituencies where Muslims make up from 10 percent to 50 percent of the total electorate: Bradford West (54%), Birmingham Hall Green and Moseley (49%), East Ham (43%), Blackburn (42%), Birmingham Ladywood (42%), Bethnal Green and Stepney (40%), Dewsbury and Batley (39%), Bradford East (39%), Birmingham Perry Barr (38%), Ilford South (37%), Birmingham Yardley (37%), Birmingham Hodge Hill (33%), Leicester South (31%), Poplar and Limehouse (30%), Oldham West (28%), Manchester Rusholme (27%), Stratford and Bow (27%), Slough (27%), Luton North (27%), Ilford North (27%), Luton South and South Bedfordshire (26%), Rochdale (26%), Barking (24%), Gorton and Denton (24%), Brent East (23%), Leicester East (22%), West Ham and Beckton (22%) , Queen’s Park and Maida Vale (21%), Walthamstow (21%), Bolton South and Walkden (21%) Edmonton and Winchmore Hill (20%) and Leyton and Wanstead (20%), Walsall and Bloxwich (19%), Huddersfield (18%), Hayes and Harlington (17%), Ealing North (17%, Bradford South (17%), Oldham East and Saddleworth (17%), Ealing Southall (17%), Derby South (16%), Burnley (16%), Wycombe (16%), Preston (16%), Smethwick (16%), Holborn and St Pancras (16%), Enfield North (15%), Harrow West (15%), Feltham and Heston (15%), Brent West (15%), Brentford and Isleworth (15%), Peterborough (15%), Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough (15%), Bolton North East (14%), Ealing Central and Acton (14%), Hendon (14%), Halifax (14%), Nottingham East (14%), Tottenham (14%), Manchester Central (13%), Harrow East (13%), Pendle and Clitheroe (13%), Birmingham Edgbaston (13%), Southgate and Wood Green (13%), Blackley and Middleton South 13%), Keighley and Ilkley (13%), Newcastle upon Tyne Central and West (12%), Hyndburn (12%), Croydon West (12%), Hackney North and Stoke Newington (12%), Dagenham and Rainham (12%), Cities of London and Westminster (12%), Coventry East (11%), Sheffield Central (11%), Leeds North East (11%), Manchester Withington 11%), Birmingham Erdington (11%), Chingford and Woodford Green (11%), Middlesbrough and Thornaby East (11%), Kensington and Bayswater (11%), Mitcham and Morden (11%), Hackney South and Shoreditch (11%), Watford (10%), Leeds East (10%), Hampstead and Highgate (10%), Birmingham Selly Oak (10%), Sheffield South East (10%), Stretford and Urmston (10%), Bury North (10%), Streatham and Croydon North (10%), Hammersmith and Chiswick (10%), Uxbridge and South Ruislip (10%), Islington North 10%). Watford (10%), Leeds East (10%), Hampstead and Highgate (10%), Birmingham Selly Oak (10%), Sheffield South East (10%), Stretford and Urmston (10%), Bury North (10%), Streatham and Croydon North (10%) and Hammersmith and Chiswick (10%).