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New Labour leader announces his shadow cabinet

Words: Laura Edgar
Thangam Debbonaire / Chris McAndrew

Labour leader Keir Starmer, MP for Holborn and St Pancras, has appointed Thangham Debbonaire as the shadow housing secretary.

Appointments to Starmer’s shadow cabinet were announced today (6 April) after he won the weekend’s Labour leadership contest with 56.2 per cent of the vote. The vote brought to an end Jeremy Corbyn’s almost five-year tenure as party leader.

Angela Rayner, MP for Ashton-under-Lyne, will serve as deputy leader.

Debbonaire has been the MP for Bristol West since the 2015 general election.

Very little can be gleaned from Debbonaire’s voting record, but she has voted for measures to prevent climate change.

Steve Reed will serve as the shadow communities and local government secretary. He has been MP for Croydon North since 2012 and was previously the leader of Lambeth Council from 2006 to 2012.

Ed Miliband, MP for Doncaster North, returns to the cabinet as the shadow business, energy and industrial strategy secretary. He stepped down as leader of the party following the 2016 EU referendum.

Other appointments include:

  • Luke Pollard, MP for Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport, shadow environment, food and rural affairs secretary;
  • Jim McMahon, MP for Oldham West and Royton; shadow transport secretary; 
  • Jo Stevens, MP for Cardiff Central, shadow digital, culture, media and sport; and
  • Anneliese Dodds, MP for Oxford East, shadow chancellor.

Starmer said: “I’m proud to have appointed a shadow cabinet that showcases the breadth, depth and talents of the Labour Party.

“This is a new team that will be relentlessly focused on acting in the national interest to respond to the coronavirus pandemic and rebuilding Labour so that it can win the next election," said Starmer.

Image credit | Chris McAndrew