• Friday, December 08, 2023

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Alok Sharma not to stand at next general election

It has not been an easy decision to stand down as an MP, says the COP26 president

Alok Sharma MP (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

COP26 president Sir Alok Sharma has joined a growing list of Conservative MPs who have decided not to stand at the next general election.

Having represented Reading West since 2010, he said it was not an easy decision to stand down as an MP.

More than 40 Tory MPs, including former health secretary Sajid Javid, have already announced they will not seek re-election to the Commons.

In a statement posted on the social media platform X on Tuesday (26), Sir Alok said, “I have this evening informed my local Conservative Association that I have decided not to stand at the next General Election and therefore do not seek to be adopted as the Conservative candidate for the revised seat of Reading West & Mid Berkshire. This has not been an easy decision for me.”

The India-born MP said it was the “honour of my life to serve as the MP for a constituency in the town where I grew up and a privilege to serve in Government and represent the UK on the international stage.”

Sir Alok, who chaired the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow in 2021, previously worked as a housing minister and then as an employment minister before becoming international development secretary and business secretary.

Now his parliamentary constituency is reorganised and it will be renamed Reading West and Mid Berkshire.

“My grateful thanks to all the constituents, local organisations, charities and businesses I have had the pleasure of working with, since being selected as the parliamentary candidate in 2006, as we have campaigned together on a whole range of issues to make our local area a better place to live and work,” he said.

“I will continue to support my Conservative colleagues and serve my constituents diligently for the remainder of my time as an MP, as well as champion in Parliament the causes I care deeply about, especially climate action.”

Last week, Sir Alok criticised the government for watering down its climate commitment which meant exemptions and delays to several key green policies.

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