Iqbal Wahhab employs ex-prisoner from ‘Badboys’


Top London Restaurateur Iqbal Wahhab is to take on a former prisoner who was one of Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Bad Boys' in the Channel 4 cookery show based in Brixton prison.

Former prisoner Andrew Insley was spotted by Wahhab when he was a guest at the temporary restaurant set up by Ramsay in Brixton prison. Wahhab was very impressed by Inlsey’s attention to detail, adding:

He won the job on his merits. I gave him the opportunity but he has proved himself to be a hard worker.

Kiran Bali: A woman on a mission


Kiran Bali, a graduate from OBV’s Parole Board Scheme is woman on a mission. Having become the youngest person to sit on the Kirklees Magistrates Bench, in 2007 she was recognised by the Queen who honoured her as Member of the British Empire (MBE). Most recently, her determination to serve her community has seen her appointment as the youngest person to chair the United Religions Initiative (URI) Global Council, at the tender age of 34.

Ghanaian President Mills sadly passes away


Ghanaian president, John Evans Atta Mills, has sadly died this week aged 68. He had been suffering from throat cancer and was taken to hospital on Tuesday at midday, but later died of cardiac arrest.

Across the political divide and the country as a whole, people expressed their grief and paid their respects. Jake Obetsebi Lamptey, the Chair of the opposition New Patriotic Party said:

This is our president who has died in office, we join all Ghanaians in mourning, we send our deepest condolences to his wife and family.

The Olympics: More than just a Game


In just one day, the world’s greatest spectacle, the Olympic Games comes to town.

A response to Joseph Harker’s critics: This is how racism takes root


OBV's Parmila Kumari looks into the criticisms of Joseph Harker’s article, 'This is how racism takes root'.

Joseph Harker wrote an insightful piece for the Guardian on Sunday, in which he compared the Rochdale case to a similar spout of cases in Derby involving child-abusers who were mostly White. He compared the media responses to both cases, to highlight how racism “creeps into the consciousness of an entire nation”.

Gentrification: What does it mean for our communities?


Same physical space, but living parallel and distinct lives

A non-Londoner will be well acquainted with the images portrayed by the media of the various boroughs of London. Bethnal Green itself (where OBV offices are located) is depicted as a working-class area, the majority of the residents being from an ethnic minority community.

Social and racial wealth gap increases


New research published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation investigates the cost of living in Britain today. Since the first financial crash and ensuing recession, households require a third more income to maintain sufficient living standards.

The cuts to tax credits under the coalition government, plus escalating childcare, transport and private rental costs, compounded by stagnating wages, places one in four of the UK's population below the income threshold for the minimum standard of living - an increase of 3 million people since 2008 to over 15 million.

Hope not hate secure EDL conviction


Just over a week ago, I took part in a BBC television debate about gross racial abuse. The Daily Mail blogger Abhijit Pandya, argued that even the most vile racial abuse should not be outlawed, arguing, Black people, ‘mustn’t be so sensitive’. When challenged he said that he wouldn’t care if he was called a 'f…Black C….' .

Immigration Zeal: Lance Corporal Baleiwai told to leave


As many people are aware, the debate surrounding immigration in the UK can be fractious, with a very slanted view of the aims and motives of prospective migrants to this country being presented in a way that incentivises tough rhetoric and actions by the powers that be in order to prevent new migration.

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