A popular national health and social care campaigner is seeking Labour’s nomination for the seat of Rochdale – with a mandate to heal divisions and restore the town’s reputation as a hub of industry, diversity and prosperity.
Dr Zahid Chauhan has won a string of awards for his work raising awareness of health conditions such as diabetes as well as championing the homeless, older folks and hardworking staff within the NHS.
He is well known to residents in Rochdale as a local GP who also works for a not-for- profit social enterprise offering out-of-hours healthcare.
Now instead of appearing on the doorstep with his doctor’s bag, the GP wants to knock on doors convincing voters that Labour is the only party who can save the NHS, close the gap between rich and poor, provide affordable housing, and create great environments.
Pakistani-Kashmiri by birth and British by heart, Dr Chauhan is also determined to fight for the right Brexit deal for Britain – a country he now calls home and whose values he proudly shares.
“After long discussions with my family, I have decided to put my name forward to be Labour’s candidate for Rochdale” said Dr Chauhan, who has held lifelong values of social justice and equality for all. “There are many reasons for this, not least my desire to help Labour repair the damage austerity has done to the country and my belief that as an effective communicator I can stand up for everyone in Britain – with a bias towards the vulnerable.
But what really decided me to stand in this constituency is the people whom I have served as a doctor. Genuinely, they deserve better than to be discarded by this Government and have their communities divided by right wing dogma. I want Rochdale to be a strong, united Labour town – a beacon to the rest of the nation where everyone matters.”
A current councillor in Oldham, Dr Chauhan is a local constituency party chairman (Oldham West and Royton) and has been chief whip of Oldham Labour group and confidant and campaign manager to senior Labour politicians including the late Michael Meacher.
As a GP, Dr Chauhan has defended our junior doctors and spoken out against the early and inappropriate discharge of patients from hospitals. His commitments on improving social care, holding sensible non-racist dialogue on immigration and enabling the poorest paid to climb out of poverty will, he believes, resonate with residents in Rochdale.
“Make no mistake, this is a massively important election for Britain and Rochdale” said Dr Chauhan, “and I believe that when the people of our great borough hear our policies – especially on the NHS – they will support Labour, help us into power and bring a sense of hope and renewed impetus to places like Rochdale, who have been so criminally ignored by this Government.
I have been an advocate for patients sometimes facing their biggest challenges and at their lowest ebb. Now I want to speak up for the people of Rochdale and make sure that our community stands proudly as a place of unity, prosperity, compassion and optimism.
Rochdale deserves to be represented by an MP with roots in the community and real life experience of the issues affecting local people. At a time when the public are cynical about and career politicians, it must be Labour that leads that grassroots renewal.”
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