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 AvatarMalcolm Todd 27th Jan - 10:51pm
    How very odd. Norman Lamb says, "although there was no evidence to suggest that such practices were taking place in the NHS, I wanted to...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 27th Jan - 10:38pm
    Stephen Donnelly, to explain further: "Capital Allowances let taxpayers write-off the cost of certain capital assets against taxable income. They take the place of depreciation...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 27th Jan - 10:28pm
    Stephen, I am not confused, if someone buys a new machine it doesn't lose 100% of its value in year one, so why can they...
  • User AvatarCllr. David Becket 27th Jan - 10:23pm
    and 100 days to stop the fracking supporting Liberals!
  • User AvatarStuart 27th Jan - 10:04pm
    @John For once I can't see where you are coming from here. This is not "Genocide Memorial Day"; it is "Holocaust Memorial Day". The Holocaust...
  • User AvatarStephen Donnelly 27th Jan - 9:54pm
    The key thing that Julian recognises is that the tax system needs to be made simpler and more transparent. Eddie seems very confused about capital...