Mayor of London Sadiq Khan says he has no interest in being Labour leader or an MP

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan says he has no interest in being Labour leader or an MP

Sadiq Khan has said he will never run to be Labour leader or attempt to return as an MP - effectively saying he is Mayor of London or nothing.

Instead, the current mayor has said the party needs a female leader after Sir Keir Starmer - but feels it could be a decade away.

The 53-year-old is his party’s candidate and bookmakers’ favourite to return to City Hall’s top job when Londoners take to the polls on May 2.

Mr Khan has had his differences with Labour’s leader Sir Keir Starmer but said on Saturday that he only has ambitions for London as he seeks a third term.

“I have no interest at all to be a Labour leader or the next Labour leader,” he told My London.

"I've got no ambitions to go back to the House of Commons.

“What I do want to do is to be the mayor for another four years. I want to work closely with Keir Starmer in relation to serving this great city, serving our great nation.”

Under Sir Keir, Labour will go into the general election - at some point this year - with hopes of returning to Number 10 for the first time since 2010.

To the consistent mocking of the Tories, Labour has never had a female leader, despite the likes of Yvette Cooper, Lisa Nandy, and Liz Kendall running in the past.

Former Labour leadership contender Lisa Nandy (PA Archive)
Former Labour leadership contender Lisa Nandy (PA Archive)

Dame Harriet Harman and Dame Margaret Beckett have been interim leaders.

Mr Khan did not name his preferred leadership choice.

"I do think that the Labour Party, whenever, in ten years' time or so, Keir decides to step aside, it would be great if we could have a permanent female leader,” he said.

"I speak as a father of two daughters. I'm a firm believer in it's difficult to be it if you can't see it.

"And so yes I'm incredibly proud that we've had Liz Truss, Theresa May, Margaret Thatcher as leaders, prime ministers, all Conservative. I'm really proud that we've had Rishi Sunak as a leader, prime minister, Conservative.

"I think it's about time Labour also showed our values in action in that sort of position. It won't be for some years, because I want Keir to be the leader for a number of years."