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Street name tribute for first female Asian councillor

Published Friday, 04 November 2016

The city’s first ever female Asian councillor has been honoured by having a Coventry street named after her.

Meto Lakha street sign

Meto Lakha, sadly passed away in February 2012, and as a tribute to her achievements a leading former councillor was keen to see her honoured in some way.

Alderman Dave Batten was the Council’s member for city development in 2003 when the Council – including Meto - gave their backing during a 10 hour debate to help kickstart the Ricoh Arena development.

At that time Meto Lakha was suffering serious health problems and was taken to hospital in intensive care immediately after the vote was made.   

Honorary Alderman Dave Batten said: “If anyone deserves this honour it is Meto, I’m absolutely delighted.”

Meto Lakha not only became the first Asian Councillor in May 1992 she was also the city’s first non-white Deputy Lady Mayoress of Coventry City Council – in 2004.

Her husband Cllr Ram Lakha, Deputy Cabinet Member for City Services said that the street name was a matter of huge pride for him, and his family. He said: "It is a permanent reminder and a fitting honour for a dear wife and mother.

“She was such a role model to others and was a hardworking and determined lady. By creating this tribute it sends a strong message to women - and particularly Asian women that anything can be achieved."

Meto Lakha had three children now aged 38, 37, and 36.  She first came to Coventry as an 11 year old in 1968.

Her desire to promote equalities encouraged into politics. She served on the health council. Meto also ran her own grocery store.

Deputy Leader of Coventry City Council, Cllr Abdul Khan, was keen to see that a street name was created in memory of Meto. He said: “It’s fantastic to witness the street name now in place. It is an important moment in Coventry’s political history.”

Meto Lakha Close is just off the A444 next to Gallagher Retail Park. 

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