Labour MP Sadiq Kahn has quit the shadow cabinet and is expected to announce that he’ll seek the party’s nomination to run as Mayor in next year’s City Hall elections.
Khan was previously Shadow Justice Secretary and also served as Shadow London Minister, despite the coalition abolishing the role of London minister in 2010.
He has used that role to position himself as a potential runner for the Mayoralty and reportedly played a key part in Labour’s decision to defer selecting a candidate until after last week’s General Election.
Last Thursday he was re-elected as MP for Tooting, increasing his majority by 318 votes to 2,842.
Unlike rival Mayoral hopefuls Diane Abbott and David Lammy, Khan repeatedly refused to tell his Tooting voters that he was planning to seek the Mayoral nomination.
Announcing his intention to stand down from the shadow cabinet, Khan told Labour’s acting leader Harriet Harman: “After taking advice from family, friends and constituents I will decide how best I can contribute to the fight over the coming months and years.”
It’s now expected Khan will confirm his long-known but much played-down Mayoral ambitions.
As well as Abbott and Lammy, he’ll be up against former MP and minister Dame Tessa Jowell and transport expert Christian Wolmar.
On Monday Mr Lammy confirmed he would remain int eh Mayoral race despite previously suggesting he might stand in the election to pick a new Labour leader.
Applications for the nomination open on May 18th and close a week later, the winning candidate will be named on July 31st.