Stella Creasy MP backs Anas Sarwar for next Scottish Labour leader

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Labour MP Stella Creasy has backed Anas Sarwar to be the next leader of the party in Scotland.

Ms Creasy said the Glasgow MSP was committed to social justice and backed his stance on keeping the UK in Europe’s single market.

Mr Sarwar, who was a Labour MP before losing his seat in 2015, is competing against left-winger Richard Leonard to succeed Kezia Dugdale as Scottish Labour leader.

With voting underway, Ms Creasy said she was “rooting” for her former Westminster colleague, who is seen as the more moderate candidate.

The Walthamstow MP said: ” When you see nationalism tearing communities and countries apart, and Theresa May and the Tories in meltdown in Westminster, it can feel hard to have faith in the power of politics to achieve anything.

“That’s why it’s people who know that Labour has to be not just an opposition, but an alternative, who are the key to our ability as a movement to make a difference.

“I’ve worked with Anas for many years and know first-hand how committed he is to social justice and how hard he works to make it happen.”

Ms Creasy, who lost out to Tom Watson for the post of Labour deputy leader in 2015, added: ” Across the UK our shared future needs people prepared to speak up for what’s right, and his stance on the single market is a case in point.

“The biggest issue facing our generation is Brexit, as hundreds of thousands of jobs across the UK depend on permanent membership of the European single market.

“Anas gets it; he knows retaining our membership is vital to our ability to fight poverty and bring prosperity to our communities.

“That’s why I’m rooting for him to become the next leader of Scottish Labour – together we can show Labour is working for the many, not the few.”

Mr Sarwar said: ” I’m delighted to have Stella’s support. When public confidence in politics is so low, she is an inspirational example of the difference that politicians can make to people’s lives.”

The new Scottish Labour leader will be announced on Saturday November 18.