Councillor to step down at election to concentrate on his community work

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A LONG-serving Sheffield city councillor has announced he is not standing at the next election - after 16 years in the post.

Lib Dem Coun Ali Qadar, who has represented Nether Edge since 1996, is stepping down when his current term ends in May 2012.

Coun Qadar, a chartered accountant, was first Muslim Liberal Democrat councillor in Yorkshire and Humber and is the longest-serving Muslim member of Sheffield Council.

He has served in several positions including shadow cabinet member for finance, chair of management of resources scrutiny committee and chair of Nether Edge, Broomhill and Central wards Area Panel.

Coun Ali Qadar stood as a parliamentary candidate in Sheffield central constituency in 1997, 2001 and 2005. He reduced Labour’s majority, over successive elections, from 22,000 to 7,000.

His successor as parliamentary candidate, former council leader Paul Scriven, lost to Labour’s Paul Blomfield by just 165 votes in May 2010.

Coun Qadar is a trustee of Sharrow citizen’s advice bureau, Sheffield Mental Health citizen’s advice bureau, Sheffield Racial Equality council and governor of Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS foundation trust.

He said: “I am not seeking re-election to spend more time for community and voluntary work, although I do not rule out the possibility of standing in the local elections at a future date.”

Coun Qadar also works for Common Ground, Abbeydale Community Trust, The Children’s Hospital Parents Advisory Group and Sanitation in the Developing World.