Wednesday, 1 April 2009
Chuka Harrison Umunna (born October 1978) is a political activist and commentator, and an employment lawyer. In March 2008, he was chosen by local Labour Party members as the party's prospective parliamentary candidate for the Streatham constituency. He is mixed of Nigerian, Irish and English descent.
He is a leading member of the centre left pressure group, Compass, on whose management committee he sits, and often speaks on its behalf in the media.
Umunna has written for the Financial Times, Tribune, the Voice, the Guardian, the New Statesman and is one of the Guardian’s Comment is free website contributors. He also appears on television and radio including on The Daily Politics on BBC2 and Question Time Extra on BBC News 24.
He is the founder and editor of the online political magazine, TMP, which is primarily aimed at left-leaning ethnic-minority Britons. Contributors to the site include Lady Prosser, David Lammy MP, Keith Vaz MP and Jon Cruddas MP (Umunna was a campaign aide to Cruddas during his Labour Party Deputy Leadership campaign). Umunna is a member of the executive committee of the Black Socialist Society, an affiliate of the Labour Party.
In November 2007, Umunna was identified as one of ten young, gifted and black people in British politics in the The Independent on Sunday by Simon Woolley, director of Operation Black Vote. Woolley said Umunna "may end up as the UK's Barack Obama". In a February 2008 edition of the New Statesman, he was referred to in an article entitled "Is there a British Obama?"