London: Keith Vaz, the longest-serving Indian-origin MP in the House of Commons, has announced his retirement from Parliament after 32 years in the wake of a drugs scandal.
Vaz had been the Labour Party's MP for Leicester East since 1987 but announced in a statement overnight on Sunday that he would not be seeking re-election in the December 12 General Election.
"I have decided to retire after completing 32 years as the Member of Parliament for Leicester East. In that time, I have won eight general elections," Vaz said in a statement posted on his website.
"It has been an honour and a privilege to serve my constituency since I came to the city in 1985. I want to thank the people of Leicester East for their absolute loyalty and support. Leicester and especially the people of Leicester East will always be in my heart," said the 62-year-old Goan-origin politician.
Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn praised the veteran MP for his "substantial and significant contribution to public life" as part of a pioneering group of black and Asian Labour MPs elected in 1987.
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