Salma Yaqoob (born 1971) is the former leader, and former vice-chair, of the Respect Party and a former Birmingham City Councillor. She is also the head of the Birmingham Stop the War Coalition and a spokesperson for Birmingham Central Mosque. On 11 September 2012, Yaqoob confirmed in a statement that she had left Respect.
Yaqoob's parents, Mohammad and Gulzarda Yaqoob, emigrated to the UK from Pakistan in the 1960s, and her father worked in a mill before joining the Royal Mail. They had 7 children - 3 daughters and 4 sons. Yaqoob was born in Bradford in 1971, but the family later moved to Birmingham, where she was raised. She describes herself during her formative years as being a "tomboyish girl" who played football on the streets of "Alum Rock".
Yaqoob became politically active after the September 11 attacks. Yaqoob asserts that she was spat at in the streets of Birmingham in the days following the attacks.
In the 2005 general election, she stood as the Respect candidate for the Birmingham Sparkbrook and Small Heath constituency against Labour's Roger Godsiff MP, with the backing of the Muslim Association of Britain. She finished in second place, ahead of the Liberal Democrat and Conservative candidates, and with 27.5% of the total vote.
Yaqoob was elected with 49.4% of the vote in the Sparkbrook ward of Birmingham City Council in the 2006 local elections. She was re-elected to the post in May 2010. Yaqoob stood in the 2010 general election for the Respect Party in the Birmingham Hall Green constituency, and came second to Roger Godsiff of the Labour Party, trailing by 3,799 votes.
On 7 July 2011, Yaqoob announced her intention to stand down as a Birmingham City councillor, citing health reasons. On the 11 September 2012, Yaqoob announced her resignation from the Respect party after what she described as a difficult few weeks and a breakdown in relations.
June 4, 2010