The Right Honourable
Keith Vaz
Chair of the Home Affairs Committee
In office
26 July 2007 – 6 September 2016
Preceded by John Denham
Succeeded by Tim Loughton (Acting)
Minister of State for Europe
In office
9 May 1999 – 11 June 2001
Prime Minister Tony Blair
Preceded by Geoff Hoon (Minister)
Succeeded by Peter Hain
Member of Parliament
for Leicester East
Assumed office
11 June 1987
Preceded by Peter Bruinvels
Majority 22,428 (42.8%)
Personal details
Born (1956-11-26) 26 November 1956 (age 67)
Website Official website

Nigel Keith Anthony Standish Vaz (born 26 November 1956) has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Leicester East since the 1987 general election.

Vaz served as the Minister for Europe between October 1999 and June 2001. He was appointed a member of the Privy Council in June 2006.

Political life

Vaz has been a Labour party member since 1982.

In 1983, Vaz stood in the general election as the Labour candidate in the Conservative-Liberal marginal Richmond and Barnes constituency, coming third with a swing away from Labour of 4.3% compared with a national average swing away of 9.3%. He stood as the Labour candidate in the European Parliament election in 1984 for Surrey West, coming third.

On 11 June 1987, Vaz was elected as the Member of Parliament for Leicester East by defeating the sitting Tory MP Peter Bruinvels with a majority of 1,924. He was re-elected in 1992 (majority of 11,316), 1997 (majority of 18,422), 2001 (majority of 13,442), 2005 (majority of 15,867), 2010 (majority of 14,082), 2015 (majority of 18,352) and 2017 (majority of 22,428).

Vaz has held a variety of parliamentary posts. Between 1987 and 1992, he was a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee, of which he was the Chair from July 2007 to September 2016. Between 1993 and 1994, he was a member of the Executive Committee Inter-Parliamentary Union. Finally, between December 2002 and July 2007, Vaz acted as a senior Labour Member of the Select Committee for Constitutional Affairs.

In 1992, Vaz was given the role of Shadow Junior Environment Minister with responsibility for planning and regeneration, his first frontbench role. He remained in this position until 1997, when he was given his first Government post as the Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Attorney General and Solicitor General. Vaz then served as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Lord Chancellor's Department between May and October 1999. This was quickly followed by his appointment as the Minister for Europe, Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He served in this position from October 1999 and June 2001.

Other positions currently held include as an elected member of the National Executive Committee and as the Vice-Chair of Women, Race and Equality Committee of the Labour Party. He has held both of these positions since March 2007. Since 2000, he has been a patron of the Labour Party Race Action Group and in 2006 he was appointed the Chairman of the Ethnic Minority Taskforce.