‘It was a matter of time until Humza Yousaf became SNP leader’: Pakistani friends and family of the First Minister reveal how they ‘expected’ him to defeat rivals – as photos reveal run-down city where his father grew up
- Mr Yousaf’s father Mian Muzaffar Yousaf was born in Mian Channu in Pakistan
Pakistani friends and family of Humza Yousaf have told how they ‘expected’ him to become Scotland’s First Minister, with one saying: ‘It was only a matter of time.’
Mr Yousaf’s father Mian Muzaffar Yousaf was born in Mian Channu in Pakistan’s Punjab province before moving to Glasgow in the 1960s.
Today, photos emerged of the run-down house by the city’s bustling bazaar where he once lived alongside the politician’s grandfather.
Mian Channu sits in the heart of a major agricultural area, with a large proportion of its residents working in farming or associated industries.
Several of Mr Yousaf’s relatives still live in the city, including his uncle, Manzoor Hussain.
Humza Yousaf’s father Mian Muzaffar Yousaf was born in Mian Channu in Pakistan’s Punjab province. This is the how where he lived as a boy
A view of a street of Mian Channu City, where Humza Yousaf’s father grew up
Yusuf’s uncle, teacher Mansour Hussain, said: ‘We were expecting this news since long as we knew that it’s just a matter of time’
‘We were expecting this news since long as we knew that it’s just a matter of time, considering his vigorous nature and profound involvement in Scotland’s politics,’ Mr Hussain told the news agency Anadolu.
‘I was informed by my wife who is currently in Edinburgh over the telephone that Humza has been elected [as SNP leader]. It was exciting news for me but not at all surprising.’
Rafi Anwar Chohan, a cousin of Mr Yousaf’s father, recalled his ‘good sense of humour.’
‘He was witty and easy to mingle with. I found him as a thorough gentleman,’ he said
Mr Yousaf, 37, was sworn in as Scotland’s sixth First Minister on Wednesday, making him the first Muslim leader of a Western European country.
Mr Yousaf’s father moved to Scotland from the city in Pakistan’s northeast in 1962
Locals standing in front of the house where Mr Yousaf’s father and grandfather lived
Mian Channu sits in the heart of a major agricultural area, with a large proportion of its residents working in farming or associated industries
He was elected to Holyrood aged only 26, taking his oath first in English and then in Urdu to honour his Pakistani heritage.
Just a year later, he became the youngest person appointed to the Scottish government as well as its first minister from an ethnic minority.
By that age he had already worked as an assistant to a string of top Scottish National Party figures, including his predecessor Nicola Sturgeon, after attending a private school then studying politics at Glasgow University.
But his rapid rise to power has not gone entirely smoothly. In 2016 he was fined £300 after being caught by police driving a friend’s car without insurance.
The Yousafs’ old house is located next to the city’s bustling bazaar
Several of Mr Yousaf’s relatives still live in the city. Pictured are the city’s gates
Mr Yousaf blamed the break-up of his first marriage for the error. Adding to his embarrassment, he was transport minister at the time.
Mr Yousaf and his second wife Nadia El-Nakla later became embroiled in a bitter racism row with a nursery.
After being told there was no space for the couple’s daughter at Little Scholars in Broughty Ferry near Dundee, Ms El-Nakla and a friend put in fake applications for children with ‘white-sounding names’.
While a watchdog told the nursery to change its procedures, earlier this year Ms El-Nakla dropped her legal action against it.
A view of a street of Mian Channu, where locals have reacted with delight at Mr Yousaf’s appointment
The front door of the house where Mr Yousaf’s father used to live
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