London assembly for North East London — fighting your corner at City Hall
Let’s celebrate the Young, Black and Proud this #BHM2017

Let’s celebrate the Young, Black and Proud this #BHM2017

2017 Black History Month gives us all an opportunity to learn more about the history and heritage of our communities.


The events, conversations and celebrations enable us to acknowledge both the struggles that have led to the advances we as a society have made, and for us all to think about how we can advance the causes of equality, peace and human rights.
It also an opportunity for us to acknowledge that in too many areas of public and civic life in London and across the UK there remains an under-representation of Black people due to the legacy of racism and discrimination.
I look forward to learning more from Black History Month 2017 and encourage everyone to seek out events in their local community, and let’s come together to learn from one another.

My Hero
For many years I have had the privilege of hosting the annual Lord Pitt Awards. The event provides a platform to recognise young people of Caribbean heritage who have and continue to make outstanding contributions to their communities and in their respective fields of work.


Read my book on Lord David Pitt here.

My 2017 Young Gifted and Black Ambassadors


Cllr Adam Jogee

Adam received the Lord Pitt award for the impressive contribution he has made to his community. Having been active in local and national politics for a number of years, he was the first Leader of Haringey Youth Council. In 2014 Adam became one of the youngest councillors in the UK on winning his seat on Haringey Council. The son of a half Zimbabwean/half Indian Father and a half Jamaican/half British Mother.

“My hero would be my Grandfather, Bob Owen, he arrived on a boat from Jamaica in 1940 and made his life here. He faced bigotry, racism and obstacles that seem so silly to me today. His sacrifices and those paid by so many like him, made it easier for my Mum and her siblings who in turn worked to ensure that someone like me could win an election and serve my community. I miss him every day but am guided by his values, teachings and legacy.”

Akilah Jeffers

Akilah Jeffers graduated from the University of Cambridge in 2012, where she read English Literature. Akilah became very engaged in student politics, serving as President of the university’s Black and Minority Ethnic Students’ Campaign from 2010 to 2012.  Akilah’s leadership won her the NUS Black Students’ Officer of the Year Award. Akilah is now a Trainee Solicitor at Clifford Chance.

“Black History Month is important to me as it affords an opportunity to reflect on the achievements of people from Black and Minority Ethnic backgrounds. One month in a year is undoubtedly insufficient, but it marks a valuable step towards recognising the contributions that BME people have made in science, literature, art, politics and indeed history. My BHM hero is Barack Obama. He is an articulate and charismatic speaker, his two election victories surpassed many expectations, and he is married to another one of my BHM heros: Michelle Obama. Whenever I find myself doubting myself or my abilities, ‘Yes we can’ becomes something of a mantra”

Jermain Jackman

22 year old singer & songwriter Jermain Jackman is known for winning BBC’s The Voice in 2014, making him the first black man to win any televised talent competition in the UK.
Whilst working with chart topping producers, Jermain is also pursuing his role as a political activist.
Jermain is currently studying politics at Leeds University and is chairing an Independent inquiry commission in Islington called the Fair Futures Commission.

“Both my black hero and heroine are Black British MP’s.Bernie Grant: we share similar stories and backgrounds. Like me, he hails from Guyanese heritage, he fought his way to being one of the first Black MP’s in Parliament. Supported by his community, he continued to think outside the box, stand up for marginalised communities and be a voice for the voiceless. Diane Abbott: first Black female MP. She broke down barriers that paved the way for a large amount of black female politicians. Despite much adversity she has continued to remain focused, determined and committed to tackling the injustice and inequality many people still face till this day. She is also my local MP and a huge inspiration to me politically.”