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“I want us to give this country a modern compassionate Conservatism that is right for our times and right for our country” this was the reported statement by 39 year old David Cameron MP, who was elected Britain’s new conservative leader on 6th December 2005.

 

"People in this country are crying out for a Conservative Party that is decent, reasonable, sensible, common sense and in it for the long term of this country and that is the party we are going to build," Mr. Cameron said.

The Member of Parliament for Witney, since 2001, David Cameron has been elected as the new Conservative leader by a margin of more than two to one over David Davis. He beat Davis by 134,446 votes to 64,398 in a postal ballot of Tory members across the UK.

 

The Black Community in general, particularly those with long memory of the “old” Conservative Party, on the issue of race and immigration, from the 1960s to the present, would welcome these words from a potential British Prime Minister.

 

If Mr. Cameron were able to put these words into action, his party would see a sufficient number of British Black voters voting for the Conservative Party in future. Research after reached showed that the Black Community during a general election in Britain can significantly influence the party that gains the most seats in Parliament and go on to form the next government.

 

Current perception is that Black People preferred the Labour Party.  This was not the case during the 1950s and early 60s. Members of the Black Community were driven away from the Conservative Party by right wing rhetoric of senior Conservative members. Examples are 20th April 1968 ‘river of blood speech’ made in Birmingham by the late John Enoch Powell, MBE, and former conservative MP for Wolverhampton South West.  ‘Britain being swamped by black immigration’ uttered by the former MP for Finchley, Conservative Leader and British Prime Minister, The Right Honorable Margaret Hilda Thatcher, (Now Baroness Thatcher) and ,as recent as  5th May 2005 election,  when The Right Honorable Michael Howard QC,  son of a Jewish immigrant to Britain, Conservative MP for Folkestone & Hythe and recent Conservative  Leader, attempted to revive the irrational fear of black immigration to Britain, with the hope of gaining votes. Race and immigration gained the conservative votes during the 1960s-1990s. 

 

The Conservative Party might have changed and now put race firmly and permanently on the agenda for change.  Perhaps the Conservative leadership is aware of the facts that, today, the average black voter will shop where they get the best deals. Party loyalty can sometimes be an albatross around the black community’s political necks, particularly when there is no significantly measurable progressive support for members of the Black community’s initiatives, particularly for its young people who have long been at the fringes of social, economic and even political exclusions.

 

To many, their certainties are anti-social orders, which threatened their liberties, imposed by the local authorities and the courts, which replaced a consistent and challenging programme of social rehabilitation of our disadvantaged children and young people in our inner cities. 

 

The current induced decline of the Black-led voluntary and community Sector, at a time when there is a pressing need for its growth,   is a testimony of the failure of the current system to have in place effective mechanism to ensure that black-managed voluntary and community groups gain adequate   resources to provide services to some of the most disadvantaged residents surviving in our inner cities. Racism is rife, from the top to the base, even in face of many progressive anti- racist Parliamentary legislations by successive governments.

 

This is a significant failure by government and its agents. The Government seems to have no obvious plan in place to reverse this trend, of local manager’s failures to give significant support to black and minority ethnic community self-help initiatives. There is a lot of talk about partnerships and best practice; but empty, unpractical and not meaningful as demonstrated by the recorded on the ground where the needs are. It is significant that Mr Cameron mentioned the importance of supporting the Voluntary Sector.

 

David Cameron is Married to Samantha, with a son and  a daughter.

He was Educated at Eton College and Brasenose College, Oxford.

He was special adviser to Cabinet ministers Michael Howard and Norman Lamont in the 1990s, then communications director at Carlton television. He was Tory campaign co-ordinator at general election and shadow education secretary.

 

Like the audience in a great arena, members of the black and ethnic minority communities, among others, will watch the plays of the British political gladiators, and decide in about three years time, whether we will be giving thumbs up or down to, Cameron, the Young Gladiator, or continue with our indifference to the old political players.

Welcome David Cameron. ‘You’re on. Let’s see what you can do, lad!’

Posted 6th December 2005. 2300GMT.

Text Box: “Our deeds will judge us” - old saying
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