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 AvatarMark Valladares 12th Aug - 11:28pm
    And finally this evening, I wanted to return to Jennie and Mary... Jennie, I feel your pain, and have been there myself. You end up,...
  • User AvatarMark Valladares 12th Aug - 11:21pm
    @ David, But it’s not just the newspapers is it? When did you last see on TV, or hear on the radio, a politician given...
  • User AvatarMichael Bukola 12th Aug - 10:56pm
    @ James Moore I sense an air of disappointment in the qualities displayed in the current Leadership race. We have to be careful not to...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 12th Aug - 10:54pm
    @ Mark.. "Does our modern media-driven politics allow risk-taking, or big ideas? I’d suggest not". You're probably right, .... but they do it for the...
  • User AvatarRichard Lowe 12th Aug - 10:21pm
    Agreed. Two things I'd like to see are minutes, especially of the Federal Board, and also voting breakdown. How do we know who to vote...
  • User AvatarNonconformistradical 12th Aug - 10:01pm
    @Tony Greaves The volunteer team who run LDV permit use of pseudonames in the public part of the forum - see https://www.libdemvoice.org/comment-policy Some people may...