Humza Yousaf on Monday created history by winning the SNP leadership contest. A son of a Pakistani immigrant, Yousaf is now set to become the first Muslim to become Scotland’s First Minister. He will replace Nicola Sturgeon, whose decision to step down from her role had necessitated the leadership election.
Yousaf’s father Muzaffar Yousaf was born in Pakistan while mother Shaaista Bhutta was born in Kenya.
After being elected as the new SNP leader, Yousaf vowed to heal the division that the bitter leadership contest created amongst SNP leaders. He also called himself ‘the luckiest man in the world’ to head the SNP.
He thanked his ‘amazing’ wife Nadia for calling her as his ‘rock’ and ‘compass who helps guide me through the most difficult of times.’ The newly-elected SNP leader also had advice for his daughters as saying that there’s no job more important to him than being their father. He, however, acknowledged the challenges attached to his new role as party leader, adding that the role of Scotland’s First Minister will be ‘all-consuming.’
Yousaf said that he was determined to work for Scottish independence from the United Kingdom and align his country with the European Union.
Saying that Scotland is European nation, Yousaf said, “I was determined then, as I am now, as the 14th leader of this great party, that we will deliver independence for Scotland – together as a team.”
Religion, Wife, Children
Yousaf is practicing Muslim and his faith almost denied him the chance to become the new FM of Scotland. He was routinely quizzed about his stance on gay marriages and asked if he believed it was a sin. He made it clear that his personal faith will not stop him from working for all sections of the society.
Yousaf was earlier married to former SNP worker Gail Lythgoe between 2010 to 2016. In 2019, he married psychotherapist Nadia El-Nakla and has one child and one stepchild.