Author Archives: Shaffaq Mohammed

Opinion: Tough Choices – Yes, but local politicians must grasp opportunities as well as challenges

Sheffield Town HallI doubt that there are many councillors who are unaware of the scale of the country’s financial difficulties. Yet whatever your prescription for resuscitating the British economy, politicians of all parties agree that reducing the deficit is a crucial piece in the puzzle.

Regardless of your views on the Government’s strategy, it is clear that reductions in council budgets are a reality. The challenge for councillors is to best adjust to the new climate and mitigate the impact on the services that people care about most.

I do not believe that the way forward is to abandon all council services, leaving local government as a sole provider of social care. Rather, local government should be taking the lead in innovative ways of thinking – taking bold steps to cut waste, not just services.

Posted in Local government and Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 4 Comments

Shaffaq Mohammed writes: From a boy in Kashmir – to Leader of Sheffield Lib Dems

On election night in Sheffield, we had a painful evening, losing hard-working local councillors and good friends. They were defeated by a protest vote against the tough decisions forced upon the Government by the financial mess they inherited from Labour.

When we entered the general election, we understood the seriousness of the financial crisis the country faced. We knew that whoever entered Government after the election faced a difficult first few years. Yet, as Liberal Democrats we took a brave decision to enter a coalition in the national interest and we must stick to our five year commitment. One thing the people of Sheffield do not want is a return to the 1980s.

I know first hand what it was like to grow up in Sheffield in the 1980s. My father, a steelworker, was made redundant by the actions of the Thatcher Government.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 3 Comments
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    "[Trump says] we should be lifting sanctions on Putin despite him backing Assad. This is a man lacking a moral compass " But why should...
  • User AvatarMary Reid 16th Jan - 4:34pm
    Mark - it was the sycophantic style of the interview that I objected to. Hardly penetrating questions.
  • User AvatarRichard Underhill 16th Jan - 4:26pm
    Green MP Caroline Lucas complained in the Commons about the privatisation of the Green Investment Bank. Cabinet Minister Greg Clarke MP tried to defend the...
  • User AvatarChris 16th Jan - 4:22pm
    @tpfkar The last mandate wasn't good enough for 40 years. It wasn't good enough for 40 seconds. We voted overwhelmingly for a clearly expressed commitment...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 16th Jan - 3:53pm
    Mark My view of what Mary said , is her , or our , reaction might be to see the non journalism in the interview,...
  • User AvatarJon 16th Jan - 3:51pm
    More bizarre shoe-horning of the SNP into an unrelated article. And does anyone seriously believe a Lib Dem MSP/FM wouldn't use the exact same deflection...