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Humza Yousaf – The Sturgeon ally with a decade of expertise as minister

Humza Yousaf is at the moment the Scottish Health Secretary and one of many SNP’s most senior and high-profile ministers.

The 37-year-old’s resolution to run within the race to interchange Nicola Sturgeon got here after “cautious consideration” of the influence it can have on his household.

He’ll hope to faucet into the identical base of activist assist because the First Minister, significantly in Glasgow – which they each symbolize at Holyrood.

Writing within the Sunday Mail, the Health Secretary mentioned: “You’ve received to place your self ahead should you suppose you’re the most effective particular person for the job. And I do.

“That is the highest job within the nation, and it wants anyone who has expertise.”

Listed here are some key info about Mr Yousaf:

– How he began in politics

After learning politics at Glasgow College, Mr Yousaf started working as an workplace supervisor for the SNP’s Bashir Ahmad, the primary MSP from an Asian and Muslim background.

Following Mr Ahmad’s demise in 2009, Mr Yousaf went on to work for different MSPs together with Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon.

– Getting into Holyrood

After being elected in 2011 as a Glasgow area MSP, he took his oath to the Queen in English and in Urdu.

He did the identical when re-elected in 2016, sporting each a kilt and sherwani to mirror his Scottish and Pakistani heritage.

His father, who’s from Pakistan, and his mom, from Kenya, moved to the UK within the Sixties.

– Early ministerial roles

Mr Yousaf’s first ministerial appointment got here below Mr Salmond’s management in September 2012, when he grew to become minister for exterior affairs and worldwide growth.

He stayed on in a junior ministerial function when Ms Sturgeon grew to become First Minister, although he was then promoted to the transport portfolio and later justice.

However his introduction of the Hate Crime Invoice whereas justice secretary was not uncontroversial, with critics saying it put undue limits on free speech.

– Well being Secretary

Maybe his best problem has come as Well being Secretary, with Mr Yousaf taking on the submit from Jeane Freeman in 2021 as she stood down from Holyrood.

The coronavirus pandemic was nonetheless affecting Scotland at that time.

He revealed that the primary name he obtained after being made Well being Secretary was from his mom, who was eager to seek out out what job he had been given within the Cupboard reshuffle.

Upon being instructed he had been given the well being portfolio, she mentioned: “What have you ever executed to bother Nicola?”

All through his time within the function, he has confronted opposition assaults over the efficiency of the NHS, significantly A&E ready instances.

This hit a nadir in December 2022, when efficiency in opposition to the four-hour goal for admission, switch or discharge fell to simply 62%.

Mr Yousaf has all the time emphasised the influence of the pandemic on the well being service and the assist being offered by the Scottish Authorities.

– Sturgeon ally

Mr Yousaf has stood by Ms Sturgeon all through his time as a minister and MSP.

On the problem of gender recognition reform, which has seen uncommon divisions emerge within the SNP, there isn’t any indication he would take a special tack.

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