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Ahead of His Visit to Orkney Who is Nadhim Zahawi ?

On Wednesday 28th of September Orkney Islands Council will be hosting a visit by UK Tory Government Minister Nadhim Zahawi. He will be in the islands to chair the UK Government’s ‘Islands Forum’ .

With a newly appointed UK Tory Prime Minister, Liz Truss, and a shifting sea of faces in the Government, it is very easy to lose track of who is who now driving policy as the pound continues to plunge to ever lower levels.

Who is Nadhim Zahawi ?

From his official UK Government bio it states the following:

Nadhim Zahawi was appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Minister for Intergovernmental Relations and Minister for Equalities on 6 September 2022.

He was previously Chancellor of the Exchequer between 5 July 2022 and 6 September 2022.

He was previously Secretary of State for Education from 15 September 2021 to July 2022.

He was Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy from 26 July 2019 to 15 September 2021 and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health and Social Care from 28 November 2020 to 15 September 2021.

He was previously Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Education from 9 January 2018 to 26 July 2019.

Nadhim was elected as Conservative MP for Stratford-on-Avon in May 2010.

In his ever changing rise through various ministerial posts Nadhim Zahawi has been responsible for some of the most disastrous and right wing policies in the UK.

Now in his current post (as I write this) as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, he is in the most senior cabinet position after that of the Prime Minister.

Looking at his voting record in the UK Parliament Nadhim Zahawi has voted for tuition fees, more nuclear weapons and cuts to welfare benefits.

Consistent with the latest Tory Government he has voted for tighter immigration controls (this includes voting against a right to remain for EU citizens already living and working in the UK); a stricter asylum seeker system for those fleeing war and persecution in other countries; and for mass surveillance on how the citizens of this country communicate with each other.

Nadhim Zahawi, is also against more powers being devolved to the parliaments of Wales, Scotland and to local councils.

The meeting in Orkney chaired by Nadhim Zahawi  will take place at Orkney Research & Innovation Campus, Stromness. It may also include a tour of the islands renewable energy sites. As we face extortionate bills for our energy in Orkney and Scotland driving ever more of us into fuel poverty, what has been Nadhim Zahawi’s record on energy?

With his links to Big Oil, he knows the pain of energy bills and reclaiming them on his parliamentary expenses.

  • 28/07/2010: £106.52 for Constituency home Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 28/10/2010: £92.52 for Constituency home Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 28/01/2011: £115.01: for Constituency home Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 01/06/2011: Claimed £50.19 Constituency home Accommodation (Gas) Not paid as receipt did not match the claim
  • 17/10/2011: £57.57 for Constituency home Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 02/11/2011: £73.58 for Accommodation (Electricity) final bill
  • 13/01/2012: Repaid £261.28 Constituency home Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 19/06/2012: £817.73 for Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 18/09/2012: £455.97 for Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 14/01/2013: £1,364.40 for Accommodation (Electricity)
  • 24/09.2013: £495.60 for Accommodation (kerosene)

These are expense claims for Nadhim Zahawi’s home. He also claimed for Council Tax, Water Rates etc for his constituency home. These claims and payments for his home stop after 2013 because of headlines like this Tory MP Nadhim Zahawi admits taxpayers paid power bill for his stables which once it was uncovered he said was a ‘genuine mistake’.

Commenting ahead of his visit to Orkney on Wednesday 28th of September , Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, The Rt Hon Nadhim Zahawi MP, said:

“As the new Minister for Intergovernmental Relations, I am delighted to be chairing the first Islands Forum in Orkney next week with the purpose of giving our islands a stronger voice.

“It is often said that people make a place, and this is certainly true of the UK’s island communities, who contribute a huge amount to our country but often face common challenges.

“I look forward to hearing directly from island communities and working closely with the devolved governments on the issues that matter most to local people, making good on our promise to deliver for the whole United Kingdom.”

In 2020, the then Prime Minister of the UK, Boris Johnson was invited by the council to visit Orkney, which he did and which also included a tour of the islands renewable sites and famously pictured holding a crab. Boris Johnson was also greeted with some booing by islanders as he was whisked around in his entourage. Prime Minister Boris Johnson Visits Orkney

Boris Johnson protest in Orkney in 2020

See also:

Fiona Grahame

5 replies »

  1. Fiona.

    What are the positive arguments we should be putting forward. They seam to be missing from this artical.

    Electricity prices reflecting costs might be one.

    Urgent need for a new electricity interconnector to Orkney might be another.

    Financial assistance to eliminate coal and oil fired heating in the islands without mains gas might be another.

  2. Maybe the wind will stop him getting here – we need the help of Scota Bess! https://theorkneynews.scot/2018/12/24/new-finds-of-different-kinds/

    Thing is, the OIC high-ups will be bowing and scraping – then there will be photos of them in the Orcadian – beaming proudly! Sick-making.

    It would be more to the point if this bloke was taken to see the work of Robinson RR….. http://www.spanglefish.com/berniesblog/blog.asp?blogid=15931


  3. What I find always rather odd and very strange: Whilst one can well develop into different roles from an education/degree (in his case according to Wikipedia a BSc in chemical engineering), I am missing a degree of continuity when I look at the holders of ministerial roles.

    In HR you would normally stay clear of people who lack direction in their professional and/or academic life unless there are justified reasons for changing direction. If you hire people with some considerable zigzag in their CV you may end up with people who have a little bit of an idea of everything but no profound expertise in anything and therefore possibly this will limit their performance in the job you want them to do.

    Could this explain why governments so often mess things up? Because the ones put in charge of something simply have no clue or relevant expertise and work from a blueprint of trial and error? Can we afford more errors?

    What is really the point in him coming up to chair the forum? Well, nice excursion to Orkney, all expenses paid. Perhaps this is the answer.

    Anybody could be chairing this forum, I would suppose. Because it is just a nice get together from “representatives” (= ‘council leaders, chief executives’ https://www.gov.uk/government/news/nadhim-zahawi-to-chair-first-islands-forum-in-orkney) and these people may – or may not(!) – represent the views of their island communities.
    Levelling up… heard the phrase so often… isn’t this just the same abstruse idea Liz Truss is currently pursueing? To somehow pave the way for big business and shareholders with the usual argument of jobs and the associated mythical trickle down effect… how well this works have the locally experienced failures of industry-led development projects shown. Our digital connectivity is comparable to developing countries, larger renewable projects rarely yield the “estimated” number of full time and well paid skilled jobs which are promised in documents submitted to support planning applications. It is worth checking… the estimated number of jobs normally does not materialise but nobody is being held accountable.
    At the same time poverty and fuel poverty is rife and unlikely to be alleviated by any half-cooked plans they might come up with.

    Does anybody really believe that another salmon farm, another spaceport in the area, some offshore windfarms etc. will finally bring the wide-spread prosperity and wealth to the residents of island communities? I doubt it.
    Not everything which can sustain an industry can be hailed sustainable development. Dependencies on industries are dangerous as we all found out when the pandemic started.

    Net zero is the focus point of tomorrow’s meeting? Firstly they would need to look at the definition of net zero and how it is calculated. This would be an eye opener…

    Same old, same old… empty phrases. An online meeting would have done… waste of money to finance a nice get together.

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