Lord Mayor of Birmingham Councillor Muhammad Afzal
The Lord Mayor was born in Pakistan in a village near Dina and he is a Science Graduate from the Punjab University. He came to England in 1969 and settled in Birmingham with his wife Tazeem.
He was very much interested in community work and joined the Labour Party in 1970 and became very active politically in his community. He was elected as a Labour Party Councillor in 1982, he was the first Muslim, Pakistani, Councillor on Birmingham City Council and only the second in the whole of the UK. He is still serving in the same Ward, Aston.
As Chair of the Council’s Urban Renewal Committee he demonstrated an ability to innovate, introducing policies and programmes which subsequently became Government policy, e.g. enveloping, new homes for old, and block schemes.
As the former Chair of the Personnel Committee, one of his major achievements from which he gained satisfaction was that he increased significantly the proportion of women, people with disability and ethnic minorities in the Council’s employment by setting recruitment targets and stringent monitoring. Under his Leadership, the BAME workforce in the Council increased from 4% in 1992 to 35% in 2004.
A passionate believer in education, the Councillor was the Chair of the Governing Body of Anglesey Primary School for over 30 years. He was also the Director of Birmingham Settlement a major Birmingham charity offering a wide range of services to Birmingham’s residents to help people gain the skills and confidence they need to overcome life’s challenges and bring about positive change.
Lord Mayor has a lifelong interest in sport which meant he was happy to Chair the Birmingham Pakistan Sports Forum, be a Member of Racial Equality Advisory ‘Group of the English Sports Council and become Vice-Chair of the National Kabaddi Association. He thinks it is particularly important to engage young people in sporting activities for their health and wellbeing. With that in mind he became a founding member of the Lozells Recreation Group.
Councillor Afzal was also a founding member of Birmingham Central Mosque and was involved during the construction of this Mosque as its Treasurer. Since then, he has been serving the Mosque in different capacities including as the Secretary, and as Chairman from 2014 to 2019. He is also a member of the Birmingham Faith Leader’s Group.
He has been awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award for public services by former Secretary of State of Foreign Affairs, David Miliband in recognition of everything he has done for the City.
He was also awarded the Community Service Award by the Right Reverend Jessie Jackson (American Senator) for his long services to the community in Birmingham.
Dietary Requirements: Halal or vegetarian, no fried food if possible