Local council leader to step down

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Kirklees Labour council leader, Mehboob Khan, will step down from his position next month as he begins a new role in London.

Cllr Khan has been the leader of the council for the past five years and a councillor for 17 years, yet will take up his new post in the capital in February.

Arrangements will now begin to appoint a new council leader from the Labour group, the largest party in the council chamber.

MOVING: Kirklees Council leader, Mehboob Khan, will be stepping down as leader yet remain on as a councillor for the district

MOVING: Kirklees Council leader, Mehboob Khan, will be stepping down as leader yet remain on as a councillor for the district

Speaking about his resignation, Cllr Khan said: “I feel the time is now right to move on as I have had a fantastic time as leader of a large council in a time of immense change for local government.

“It has been a privilege to be a councillor for Greenhead ward and leader of my home authority – but it would not be right to be leader for ever when it is a role which demands such a huge amount.

“My new post in London will be an exciting challenge, working with council leaders, the Mayor of London and Westminster.

“But I have no doubt that my successor, once that person is in place, will have a strong platform to build from and lead Kirklees through its most difficult financial challenges in its history.”

The Huddersfield resident will become a political advisor at the Local Government Association, specifically working with the London boroughs, the Mayor of London’s office and Westminster. He will remain on as a councillor for Kirklees yet leave his post as leader.

Cllr Khan will officially relinquish his position as leader at the end of next month and spoke of his gratitude for all the people who have helped him over the past two decades.

He said: “I would like to thank the many colleagues and friends who have supported me as a councillor and council leader, and especially the council staff who work so hard to deliver services to local people.

“While this has been a very difficult decision for me personally, my new role is an exciting challenge at the right time. You can only do such a high pressure role as council leader for so long while being as effective as possible, and I am confident that whoever my successor is, they will be able to take the council through the new challenges it is facing.

“However, until I stand down, it is business as usual for all of us, with the most important decision on the next budget being taken next month.”

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