|Looking back at last week...|
|Sunday, 24 July 2005 20:18|
Over the last few days there are have been a
number of important events I have taken part in.
The Summit at No 10 Downing Street provided a valuable opportunity for the PM to begin a dialogue with representatives from around the country about the best way to defeat terrorism. It was encouraging that the Leader of the Opposition (Michael Howard) and the Leader of the Liberal Democrats (Charles Kennedy) were present and able to show a united approach to tackling the problems faced by us. The following day I attended the meeting organised by Charles Clarke MP, the Home Secretary to build on the No 10 Summit. Both these meetings have been widely reported in the national media so I will not repeat in the blog what occurred at these meetings, except to say these are just the beginnings of a consensual and mainstream way to defeat terrorism.
I also organised a meeting with Tooting Labour Party members on 19th July. I invited Tony McNulty MP who is the Minister at the Home Office responsible for Identity Cards. This provided a really good opportunity for Tooting residents to discuss the proposals for ID cards with the Minister. The discussion was heated in places, but it is important that these dialogues take place over legislation that people have concerns about.
On 21st July, I took part in the "Gifted and Talented" Conference at Southfields Community College.The Conference had been going for three days, and 120 students from 5 secondary schools in Wandsworth were participating in workshops, writing manifestos and doing their own political broadcasts. I was "grilled" by a number of young Paxmans and Kirsty Walks for the newspapers they were producing as part of the political awareness scheme. It was really encouraging to see 13, 14 and 15 year olds interested in politics, politicians and policy.
I also attended Fircroft Primary School’s summer fete where the PTA, teachers and children helped to raise money for the school whilst having a great time.
On Sunday 24th July, I spoke at an Islamic Awareness event at the Tooting Islamic Centre. This was organised by Imam Sulayman Gani to bring people from the local community together to introduce the principles and beliefs of Islam and dispel rumours and misconceptions about Islam.
At the moment, there is a strong need for British Muslims to demystify the faith and for non Muslims to understand that it is possible to be both British and Muslim. Loads of people were at the event, and I am proud of how well the local community in Tooting comes together at times like this.
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