ISLAMABAD: The son of a Pakistani immigrant has become the first Asian minister in the British Cabinet after being made Secretary of State for Culture, Media, Sports and Equalities following Maria Miller’s scandalous departure from the government.
Sajid Javid, the Bromsgrove MP, a former managing director at Deutsche Bank, has long been viewed as a rising star in the Conservative Party and has been tipped by some as a potential future leader.
His father, Abdul, a bus driver, arrived in Britain in 1961 from Pakistan with just £1 in his pocket and was named locally as “Night and Day” because he worked all hours.
Equality campaigners described Prime Minister David Cameron’s decision to make Sajid Javid senior minister as historic. Operation Black Vote’s Simon Wooley said: “I wonder when Sajid Javid woke up this morning he was aware to make British history.
By midday the Prime Minister had made him Secretary of State for Culture and Media. The first time a black and minority ethnic politician has held such a post.
This is a truly historical moment not just for the Muslim and other minority communities but for all of us. A working class kid from the Rochdale has one of the most important political jobs in the country.”
Before taking over the new ministry yesterday, Sajid Javid served as Britain’s Financial Secretary to the Treasury.
In November last year, he had vowed that he will ensure that money-laundering was stamped out because it was causing damage to British economy.
The high-profile Pakistani origin Conservative Party MP had said that most countries with big banks take money laundering seriously “much more today than 20 or so years ago.”
His father, who did menial jobs to educate his children from a crowded house in Rochdale, Manchester, took interest in politics.
He was initially a Labour voter but switched to the Tories after being impressed by Margaret Thatcher.
The family lived in Rochdale before moving to Bristol where Javid attended Downend School, a comprehensive, before going on to study politics and economics at Exeter University.