Agenda item

Vote of Thanks to the Outgoing Mayor

For the incoming Mayor to invite a vote of thanks for the outgoing Mayor, in accordance with Standing Order 27(c).


NOTED the vote of thanks to the outgoing Mayor.


The Mayor then invited Councillor McLennan to propose a vote of thanks for co-opted and other Members serving on the Council’s Committees.


Councillor McLennan began by thanking Councillor Mahmood for the example he had set in terms of undertaking his civic duties during his time as Mayor, highlighting the number of engagements he had attended and fundraising activities in support of his charities.  As this was the Annual Meeting of the Council she also advised it was an ideal opportunity to highlight the valued work of the Council’s co-opted committee members, given the core role they played as critical friends in the Council’s democratic process.  She advised that their independence and objectivity were highly valued and integral to the role of the bodies on which they served including Scrutiny, Audit & Standards and various health and education bodies and concluded by thanking all of the co-opted Members (including the long serving but recently retired Sheila Dar) for their work in supporting the Council’s drive towards continuous improvement.


The Mayor then invited Councillor M Butt to propose a vote of thanks to the outgoing Mayor, Councillor Mahmood.


Councillor M Butt began by congratulating Councillors Ezeajughi and Colacicco on their appointment as Mayor and Deputy Mayor.  Given their qualities, he advised he was proud to have them representing the borough during such an important year and advised that he was always impressed at how the mayoralty seemed to bring the best out of its incumbent.  Councillor M Butt felt this had definitely been the case in terms of Councillor Mahmood’s year in office with the role transforming him from one of the more unassuming councillors into an open armed, warm hearted champion for the borough and it’s many varied communities.  Commending Councillor Mahmood for his commitment and dedication during his time in office, he also highlighted the legacy he had left in relation to his charity and fundraising efforts in support of the READ Foundation and SUFRA.  He highlighted the vital support both organisations provided for individual and local communities across the borough given the impact of the current Conservative Government’s austerity measures, highlighting the important and invaluable role community leaders such as Councillor Mahmood played in terms of their continued work to support such organisations.


The selfless and diligent work and achievements by Councillor Mahmood would, he felt, raise the bar in terms of standards for civic duty.  Councillor M Butt ended by asking everyone assembled at the meeting to join him in offering their sincerest thanks to the work of Councillor Mahmood as Mayor of Brent during the 2018/2019 municipal year.


The Mayor then invited Members to make additional contributions in thanking the outgoing Mayor.


Councillor Colwill (Leader of the Conservative Group) congratulated Councillor Ezeajughi on his election as the new Mayor and Councillor Colacicco on her appointment as Deputy Mayor and, on behalf of the Conservative Group, thanked Councillor Mahmood for his year in office.  He praised the dignified way he had conducted himself and also the open and fair way he had conducted Full Council meetings during his time as Mayor and also took the opportunity to congratulate him for his significant fund raising efforts.  He ended by extending his best wishes to Councillor Mahmood on the conclusion of his term of office.


Councillor Dixon also took the opportunity to congratulate Councillor Mahmood for the way he had conducted himself during his year in office, which she felt had demonstrated his hard work, diligence, commitment and compassion.  Supported by his family, she felt it was no surprise Councillor Mahmood was held in such high esteem given his dedication to the role but also advised she would be delighted to welcome him back to his role as a fellow ward councillor.


The Mayor then invited Councillor Mahmood to respond and review his year in office.


Councillor Mahmood expressed his gratitude for having a final opportunity to give thanks and review his year in office and started by placing on record his appreciation for all the support received from both Officers and Members during his Mayoral year.  Specific thanks were given to Councillors Butt (as Leader of the Council), McLennan (as Deputy Leader), Mei Sim-Lai (as the Borough’s Deputy Lieutenant) and his fellow Dollis Hill ward councillors Dixon and Ahmed for all the support they had provided during his time as Mayor along with the following key individuals who he invited to come forward to receive a small token of his thanks:


·                Carolyn Downs (Chief Executive); and

·                Kim Gordon (Civic Support Officer).


In addition, he also took the opportunity to specifically thank Brian Kennedy for his support as Mayor’s Attendant throughout the year; Regina McDonald who manages the Executive Support Team and also Thomas Cattermole for his invaluable advice, support and guidance.


He also thanked Councillor Ezeajughi for his support as Deputy Mayor and wished him well for his coming year in office, highlighting the commitment he knew he would bring to the role.  He also wished Councillor Colacicco well in her role as Deputy Mayor, highlighting the fine support he felt she would be able to provide for the Mayor.


Looking back on his year in office, Councillor Mahmood reflected on the numerous events he had attended giving him an opportunity to meet many inspiring, talented and generous individuals.  He advised it had been a real honour with highlights including the various visits to a wide range of community groups, faith groups and residents’ associations; attending the New Year’s Day London Parade and various other London Lord Mayor and London Mayoral events; hosting various international delegations including from Albania, China, India, Algeria, Romania and most recently the High Commissioner of Pakistan.  He was also particularly pleased to have been able to promote the Borough internationally including on a recent personal visit to Pakistan where he had been able to meet the Mayors of Islamabad, Lahore, Rawalpindi, Sialkot and his own birth place – Gharmala Jhelum where he was able to meet many high ranking police officers, Deputy District Commissioners and his counterpart the Chairman of the City of Jhelum.  He advised that everyone he had met had been impressed by the services the Council continued to deliver for its residents in challenging times.  He also thanked the local press for their assistance in covering so many of these events and in helping to raise the profile of the Mayoralty.


Councillor Mahmood then moved on to reflect on his fundraising activities over the year in support of his two chosen charities – Sufra North West London and the READ Foundation.  He highlighted the fantastic work carried by both organisations and advised he was proud and delighted to confirm that the final amount he had raised so far in support of both organisations was approaching £80,000.  He thanked everyone who had been involved in supporting and sponsoring his fundraising efforts over the year including the following members of his charity committee – Berrun and Rajesh from Sufra and Asad from the READ Foundation.  The Council paused to recognise the support and work undertaken by each organisation and Mayor’s fundraising achievements with a round of applause.


Concluding, the outgoing Mayor highlighted how much had had enjoyed his time in office and what an honour and privilege it had been to represent the borough at so many events and welcome so many visitors to the Mayor’s Parlour at the Civic Centre.  He ended with a special thanks to his wife, children and grandchildren and other friends and family members for their continued love, patience and support throughout a year he had hugely enjoyed.