Opinion: Putting people at the heart of everything

PUBLISHED: 08:30 26 May 2019

Cllr Rokhsana Fiaz has been Newham's mayor for a year.

Cllr Rokhsana Fiaz has been Newham's mayor for a year.

Rokhsana Fiaz

It has been a year since the people of this borough put their faith in me, giving me the privilege of becoming Mayor of Newham. Since then, we’ve been delivering on the promises I made last May, but there is a lot more to do.

A lot more to change the council and transform the way we do things so people are always at the heart of everything we do.

I am humbled that after the end of my first year as mayor, residents remain hopeful, full of anticipation and goodwill. I won't squander that goodwill. That's why I remain impatient because I want the spirit of public service at Newham Council to be felt by residents day in, day out.

As I progress into my second year, I aim to renew trust between the council and our residents.

We'll be building on the successes of year one. We will continue to tackle the housing crisis head on. Work has already started on 227 new council homes - double the number I pledged for the first year.

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A marker has been laid down about how we intend to deal with the climate emergency, and we've made a commitment to become a living wage council.

We're addressing poverty, tackling inequality and sharing economic prosperity through our community wealth building agenda.

The scourge of risky LOBO loans has been removed from the council. A deal was struck with NatWest, saving up to £143million that can now be spent on services for our residents.

I set many pledges when I stepped into office, and one I am really passionate about is working with young people. There are amazing young people in every corner of this borough, and I'm determined to make Newham the best place in the world for young people to grow up and live.

I want the young people of Newham to feel safe, and to have infinite ambition. They will have our backing to ensure they have the support and resources to achieve their dreams.

As I look back at the achievements of my first year in office, it makes me more determined to achieve what is best for your family and our community - by putting the people of this borough at the heart of everything that I do.

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