'Daughters can be as powerful as sons'

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  • मंगलबार, १० बैशाख, २०७६
  • 3 years ago
  • English



Akanshya Gurung was born in Pokhara, Nepal but moved to England, United Kingdom (UK) at the age of 7 and has been living in the UK since. Now at 22 years old, she is in her final year of studying Politics (BSc) at the University of Surrey and is the elected Co-Chair of Surrey Labour Students, the Labour society at the University. She is also running as a Labour Party candidate in the upcoming local elections. She is running in the Pirbright ward of Guildford, Surrey.



Below is her statement:


I have been a member of the Labour Party for 4 years now. I joined because the values and views I hold about how society should be align most with the Labour Party – I believe in socialism, equality for all, democracy and more power to the people. I want our country to be run democratically by the people for the people, not by the small wealthy elite. For the many, not the few.





I know that many people, especially those from the Nepalese community, are usually surprised to see a young Nepalese woman being so heavily involved in politics, but representation in politics is something very important to me. Without the representation of minority groups, our voices in shaping both local and national policies will go unheard.



Young people are becoming more aware and engaged with the world around them and I want to bring their fresh perspectives to politics. And as a Nepalese woman, it is so important to me that I challenge the traditional views in Nepal about women…I want to show Nepal that their daughters can be just as smart, just as successful and just as powerful as their sons. I was very lucky because my mother and father always taught me that I could do and be anything I put my heart and mind to.



The Nepalese community


When my late father was elected as a local Labour councillor in Merton Council, he became a direct link between the growing Nepalese community in Merton and the local council. This was instrumental in helping many Nepalese families who had just moved to England from Nepal. They needed help with the language, adjusting to a new country and culture and finding jobs or school places for their children; and my father, being Nepalese, could attend to their issues much more effectively. I want to continue being a representative figure in politics for the Nepalese community in the UK, just like he was.



In Pirbright, the ward that I am running as a candidate for, there is an army base camp and a considerate number of Nepalese Gurkha families. It was great to meet several of them when I was campaigning in Pirbright recently.





Above all else, I wish to represent and put forward the issues that all Pirbright residents face:


-       I want to improve the frequency of bus services

-       Conserve the character of the village

-       Fix the 3Ps – potholes, parking and pollution!



Pirbright is a village on the outskirts of Guildford and, therefore, their issues often get ignored by the local council. This is something I want to actively change – I want the council to be more responsive to Pirbright residents.



Housing affordability is also a big issue in the whole of Guildford. Guildford Labour want to shift the balance of housebuilding towards affordable houses, so that the next generation can afford to live in Guildford too. And as a student renting in Guildford, I know first-hand the increasingly unaffordability of renting in Guildford. As a student, I want to build bridges between the local council and the student community in having more housing support for students.



I want to bring a fresh perspective into the council and work hard to represent the forgotten residents of Pirbright. Along with Guildford Labour, I want to also focus on housing affordability and protecting the environment in our local area.




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