SEVEN of the newly elected members of the British Parliament are persons with Nigerian heritage.
United Kingdom-based Nigerian university lecturer, Dr Adebisi Adewole, who is also the Managing Editor of African Pulse Magazine told The Nation that Nigerians across the UK feel elated over the development.
According to the university lecturer, the celebration of the elected MPs success appears justified as they have broken various forms of historical barriers, while some Nigerians at home still feel preoccupied with barriers of ethnic, religious and other forms of division.
One of them, 49 years old Kate Ofunne Osamor, whose two parents are Nigerians, was re-elected as Member of Parliament of Edmonton.
She read Third World Studies at the University of East London, got elected on Labour platform in May 2015 and was appointed Shadow Secretary of State for International Development in June 2016.
Also, Chinyelu Susan “Chi” Onwurah, who has a Nigerian father, was re-elected as the MP representing Newcastle upon Tyne Central constituency.
Born in April 12, 1965, Chi was first elected on the platform f Labour Party in 2010 when she became Newcastle’s first-ever black MP and she became Shadow Minister for Business, Innovation and Skills, as well as Shadow Minister for Culture, Media and Sport two years ago.
Another re-elected British MP is 39-year-old Chuka Umunna, a graduate of Law from the University of Manchester who has been representing Streatham constituency since 2010.
Among the newly-elected MPs with Nigerian heritage is a graduate of Law, Fiona Onasanya, who now represents Peterborough constituency.
Bim Afolami, who also became MP representing Hitchin and Harpenden constituency on the platform of the Conservative Party, has a Nigerian father.
Also, Helen Grant, who made history in 2010 as the first black woman to be elected as MP on the ticket of the Conservative Party, won again this time to represent Maidstone and The Weald constituency.
Olukemi Adegoke, Olufunto Badenoch, who describes herself on her website, http://kemibadenoch.org.uk as being born in Wimbledon and bred up in both Nigeria and the United States, is a 37-year-old mother of one daughter.
A graduate of Engineering and Law, she is MP for Saffron Walden constituency.
According to Dr. Adewole, Nigerians need to learn from the liberal democracy they claim to be copying.
“In Nigeria, they would have been asked, ‘Who knows your family’? ‘Ah, you are Igbo and you have Yoruba blood with your mother known to have dated an Hausa man’, ‘You are a woman’ ‘You are too young’, ‘How much do you have?’, ‘Who is your godfather?’, You are muslim’, and so on.
“No one would have bothered much about the question of competence for the job,” he stated regretfully.
Congratulations to the seven candidates of Nigerian heritage for winning the election to become members of parliament in U.K.
The seven candidates are:
Chuka Umunna -Streatham
Bim Afolami – Hitchin & Harpenden
Fiona Onasanya- Peterborough
Chi Onwurah – Newcastle Central
Kate Osamor – Edmonton
Kemi Badenock – Saffron Walden
Helen Grant – Maidstone & The Weald