UNITED KINGDOM (OBSERVATORY) – Sajid Javed, the son of Pakistani immigrants to Britain in the 1960s, took over the Interior Ministry portfolio on Monday amid an acute crisis over how the ministry handles immigrants.
The 48-year-old former banker became Britain’s first interior minister from an ethnic minority.
The Ministry of the Interior is one of four major portfolios in British politics, including the prime minister and the ministries of foreign affairs and finance, and is one of the most difficult tasks.
Javed replaced Amber Rudd, who resigned Sunday night against threats to deport the Windsor family, whose families moved to Britain from the Caribbean in the 1950s and 1960s.
A day before he was appointed, Javed told The Sunday Telegraph that the issue was “very personal,” saying, “I thought (how could it be) my parents, my mother, my uncle or even me?”
Javid is currently responsible for resolving the issue, pledging to deal with those affected by “respect and justice” and dealing with broader immigration, security and counterterrorism policies.
Prime Minister Teresa Mae said Javed, who was previously responsible for housing policy and before that, the business minister, “proved his ambition and determination to deal with difficult issues.”
Javid has risen rapidly in the public service ladder since he was elected to parliament in 2010, where he has become an example for the Conservatives because of his dependence on himself.
His father arrived in Britain with only one pound in his pocket, working in a cotton factory in the town of Rochdale near Manchester in the center of the country.
He moved with his family, which includes Javed and his four brothers, to Bristol, in southwestern Britain, where he worked as a bus driver before working in a women’s clothing store.
Despite the difficulties, Javed was able to complete his university studies and managed to get jobs in the banking sector. He worked at Chase Manhattan and then at Deutsche Bank before breaking into politics.
Javid currently represents Britain’s multicultural and civilized face to Muslim parents but does not practice the teachings of Islam while his wife Laura, the mother of his four children, is Christian and goes to church.
Javid follows the line of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and supports free markets. Despite his long opposition to the EU, he stood against Brexit during the 2016 referendum to leave the bloc.
For her part, Rad was a strong supporter of staying in the EU. Javid will now take over as chair of the key ministerial committees that will contribute to determining the future of Britain’s EU relationship ahead of London’s formal exit from the bloc in March 2019.