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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  • User AvatarT-J 31st Oct - 3:12am
    David Allen, you're going to find your new friends in the Green Party are a mixed bunch as well. The last Green member-activist I dealt...
  • User AvatarMatthew Huntbach 31st Oct - 12:42am
    Jack I am quite happy to accept that the Lib Dems were unable to get through specific policies; I am not happy to accept that...
  • User AvatarRichard Church 30th Oct - 11:46pm
    Helen, There's a quote in the bible on the lines of you should see the log in your own eye before picking out the splinter...
  • User Avatartez 30th Oct - 10:56pm
    For once a sensible approach to drugs use
  • User AvatarStephen Hesketh 30th Oct - 9:22pm
    @paul barker 30th Oct '14 - 8:36pm Paul, re Labour tearing themselves apart, I sincerely hope they do. I think the British left and our...
  • User Avatartonyhill 30th Oct - 9:05pm
    Stephen Donnelly - quite right. As I have said on previous discussions about this sort of topic, what is all the angst about? This is...