Press Office

Wednesday 29 Oct 2014

Press Release

Speech Debelle joins Young Voters' Question Time panel in week of Conservative Party Conference

Update: 03/10/2011 – This release has been updated to include additional panel members.


Hip-hop artist Speech Debelle joins the Young Voters' Question Time panel on Tuesday 4 October from Salford during the Conservative Party Conference.

The panel will also feature Kwasi Kwarteng MP, Luciana Berger MP, Humza Yousaf MSP, Jenny Willott MP and Stella English, winner of the BBC's The Apprentice in 2010.

Debelle, 28, from south London, won the Mercury Music Prize in 2009 for her debut album Speech Therapy. She tweeted at the time of the Tottenham riots that they were the result of "oppression" and that "destruction has become a form of communication for so many young people".

She has campaigned to encourage young people to vote and has also campaigned against the BNP. She said: "I'm really looking forward to taking part in Young Voters' Question Time. Especially at a time when our country's current events are having a very real effect on young people. This is a perfect time for us to voice our opinions in the hope of being heard."

Kwasi Kwarteng is Conservative MP for Spelthorne. A former Etonian scholar, he is author of the Ghosts Of Empire in which he argues that the British are responsible for many of the problems former colonies suffer today – and After The Coalition, about the future of the Conservative Party.

Luciana Berger is Labour & Co-operative MP for Liverpool Wavertree and a shadow minister for Energy and Climate Change. A former director of Labour Friends of Israel she was elected in 2010.

Humza Yousaf is – at 26 – the youngest Scottish National Party member of the Scottish Parliament. He represents Glasgow. The former media spokesperson for the charity Islamic Relief was raised in Glasgow and was elected in 2011.

Liberal Democrat MP Jenny Willott was elected in 2005 and held various shadow cabinet positions including Work and Pensions from 2008-9. In December 2010 she resigned her post as parliamentary aide to Chris Huhne shortly before a vote to increase tuition fees in order to keep her pledge to constituents that she would vote against any increase in fees.

Stella English was the winner of The Apprentice in 2010. She had a difficult childhood – but with no qualifications went on to build a successful career at a Japanese investment bank. After working as a product manager with Lord Sugar's firm Viglen for a year she left to work for YouView – a company chaired by Lord Sugar.

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