History was made in Scotland on Saturday as the country elected its first woman of colour to serve as a member of the Scottish parliament (MSP).
Kaukab Stewart won her race for the Scottish National Party (SNP) in the Glasgow Kelvin constituency, describing the achievement as an “honour”.
“It is without doubt an honour to be elected as the first woman of colour to the Scottish parliament,” Stewart said in her acceptance speech on Saturday.
“It has taken too long, but to all the women and girls of colour out there: the Scottish parliament belongs to you too, so whilst I may be the first, I will not be the last.
“I intend to be a voice for every single person in Kelvin that I’ve been elected to represent. Whether you voted for me or not, please know my door will always be open.”
The Scottish first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, praised the historic win, saying she “could not be prouder right now”.
“I am thrilled beyond words to see Kaukab Stewart elected. Party politics aside, this is a special and important moment. It has taken far too long, but @kaukabstewart is the first woman of colour to be elected to the Scottish parliament,” she tweeted.
Party politics aside, this is a special and important moment. It has taken far too long, but @kaukabstewart is the first woman of colour to be elected to the Scottish Parliament. I could not be prouder right now. https://t.co/0mLToFErwh
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) May 8, 2021
Stewart beat the co-leader of Scottish Greens, Patrick Harvie, to take over the seat from Sandra White, also of the SNP. Stewart won 14,535 votes, compared with 9,077 for Harvie.
As the regional list seats were allocated into the early evening, Scottish Labour’s Pam Duncan-Glancy became the first permanent wheelchair-using MSP, representing Glasgow region. Duncan-Glancy told reporters: “I promise to do everything in my power to make sure that the path for the next disabled and permanent wheelchair-using MSP is nowhere near as hard as it has been for the first.”
She congratulated Stewart describing it as a “fantastic result”. “It really has been an incredibly special day for equalities.”