LETTER: Imran Ahmad Khan MP: 'I have not forgotten Wakefield'

In reply to Derek Bos’ letter, ’Unanswered letters to MP’ in last week’s Express.

Friday, 6th November 2020, 10:39 am
Updated Friday, 6th November 2020, 10:41 am
Imran Ahmad Khan replies to Derek Bos’ letter, ’Unanswered letters to MP’ in last week’s Express.

I have certainly not forgotten the people of Wakefield. I was born in Middlestown and schooled in Wakefield until I was 18.

My father was a consultant at Pinderfields and my mother a nurse here too. Wakefield shaped me and I could no more forget it than forget my own name!

I’m proud that I voted against the 10pm curfew. It may have been a rare act of rebellion, but I considered the matter very carefully indeed and concluded that such a measure would cause irreparable damage to Wakefield’s night-time economy.

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The livelihood and well-being of my constituents was very much at the forefront of my mind when I took this decision - one I still stand by wholeheartedly. I believe it was the right thing to do.

During this pandemic, the government has taken unprecedented steps to help alleviate child food poverty.

This has included extending increasing universal credit, and allocating £63m to councils for struggling families.

The national voucher scheme saw over £380m worth of voucher codes redeemed into supermarket e-gift cards for schools and families.

In normal circumstances, free school meals would only be available during the term time.

However, these are unprecedented times and ministers were right to provide as much support as possible to families in dire situations.

The Conservative Party seeks to eliminate child poverty entirely. The answer is found in building pathways out of poverty through enabling aspiration and achievement.

In 2016, over 66 per cent of Wakefield voted in favour of the UK leaving the European Union. I still believe that Brexit represents a tremendous opportunity for the UK to remould itself in the coming decades, allowing us to trade freely with who we choose and invest wisely in exciting emerging technologies - technologies which will revolutionise sectors such as manufacturing.

I cannot deny that the transition may have its issues, but, if we choose wisely, Brexit gives us a once-in-a-generation opportunity to steer this country towards positive, forward-looking and innovative new pathways, especially if we can improve our skills and education base.

Indeed, my long-term vision for Wakefield includes those very things.

Finally, I believe one of my staff members has already written a polite letter to you explaining why we have not answered every single piece of correspondence you have sent to the office, and even congratulated you on starting your blog!

This is, as you can see, still proudly a free country and it is only right and proper that you have ready access to channels for self-expression - the hallmark of a true democracy. I wish you every success in the future.