Official parliamentary portrait 2017
|Member of Parliament |
for Hitchin and Harpenden
|Assumed office |
9 June 2017
|Preceded by||Peter Lilley|
11 February 1986
Crowthorne, Berkshire, England
|Alma mater||University College, Oxford|
Abimbola "Bim" Afolami FRSA (born 11 February 1986) is a British Conservative Party politician. He has served as the Member of Parliament for Hitchin and Harpenden constituency since the 2017 general election.
Afolami was born and raised in Crowthorne, Berkshire. His father Samuel is a Nigerian consultant doctor in the NHS, who came to the UK in his early twenties. In 2002, it was reported in the press that Dr Afolami had fabricated qualifications in 1990s job applications to Watford General Hospital and Charing Cross Hospital; he was reprimanded by the General Medical Council, the chairman of the disciplinary panel concluding that Afolami's "actions, though reprehensible, (did) not warrant the imposition of the more severe sanctions at (the GMC's) disposal."
Afolami was educated at Bishopsgate School, Eton College and University College, Oxford where he read Modern History, served as Librarian of the Oxford Union Society and played football for the university team.
Afolami was the official Conservative candidate for Lewisham Deptford at the 2015 general election, where he finished in second place with 7,056 votes, and achieved the best result for the Conservative Party since 1992. He was selected as the Conservative candidate for Hitchin and Harpenden constituency in 2017 following the announcement that the sitting Conservative MP Peter Lilley, was to stand down.
In 2018, Afolami was named one of the Franco-British Council's Young Leaders, a group of 57 from across a diverse range of sectors people who represent the future of the bilateral relations.
In April 2018, Afolami was also a member of the delegation to Beijing for the tenth Anniversary Leadership Forum, led by Cabinet Minister David Lidington MP. The Forum, entitled ‘Partners for Progress: Strengthening the UK-China relationship in the Golden Era’, aimed to discuss practical cooperation between the UK and China in light of Brexit.
In May 2018, it was announced that Afolami would be one of 14 new patrons of the Conservative Reform Group, a group of centrist Conservative MPs. Afolami voted "Remain" in the 2016 referendum on EU membership. He has said that as the country is leaving the EU, the UK should be prepared to compete hard to protect the interests of the City of London during Brexit negotiations.
Afolami joined the Steering Committee of the Constitution Reform Group at the end of 2018. The Group is a cross-party pressure group, chaired by Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury, which seeks a new constitutional settlement in the UK by way of the Act of Union Bill 2018 which was introduced as a Private Member's Bill by Lord Lisvane in the House of Lords on 9 October 2018 when it received a formal first reading. His interest in the Constitution Reform Group  stems from his concerns regarding the division between the EU referendum results in the different countries of the UK, as well as the lack of strategy regarding local governance and devolution arrangements in England and the devolved assemblies.
Afolami has also been campaigning for a better deal for commuters across his constituency, following the announcement of huge timetable changes from May 2018 by Govia Thameslink.
In December 2018, Afolami was subjected to a barrage of hostile questions from angry constituents when he announced that he was intending to back Theresa May's Brexit deal. He also said that he was in favour of a Plan B, known as Norway Plus, should the original deal fail to pass parliament.
Afolami is Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Credit Unions and a Commissioner for the Financial Inclusion Commission, a body chaired by Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles (former British ambassador to Egypt, Israel, and Saudi Arabia, now Group Head of Government Affairs at HSBC), which is working to ensure that financial inclusion remains top of the public policy agenda.
- "Afolami, Abimbola, (Bim), (born 11 Feb. 1986), MP (C) Hitchin and Harpenden, since 2017 - WHO'S WHO & WHO WAS WHO". www.ukwhoswho.com. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.001.0001/ww-9780199540884-e-289479.
- The Times, 8 Sept. 2012, Announcements section, Engagements
- "The Berkshire anaesthetist accused of hoodwinking". Court News UK. 2 November 2002.
- "Doctor's qualifications were false, court hears". News Shopper.
- "Doctor reprimanded by General Medical Council". News Shopper.
- Yousif, Layth (15 May 2017). "Learn more about Hitchin and Harpenden's Conservative candidate Bim Afolami". Herts Advertiser. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
- Stewart, Victoria; Winckler, Marie (6 October 2011). "Rainbow Tories: The geek, the fundraiser and the Tanzanian immigrant's son". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
- "8 things you need to know about your General Election candidates: Lewisham Deptford". News Shopper.
- "The Franco-British Young Leaders". Franco-British Council. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- Asher, JP (12 January 2018). "Revealed: What your MP has claimed back on expenses". Herts Advertiser. Retrieved 31 January 2018.
- "10th UK-China Leadership Forum". The Great Britain-China Centre. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- David Singleton. "Progressive Tory MPs organise against Jacob Rees Mogg et al". Total Politics. Dods Group plc. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
- Layth Yousif. "'I've worked hard and made the most of it – now I want to do it for you': The Comet meets Bim Afolami, the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Hitchin and Harpenden". The Comet. Archant Community Media Ltd. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
- Albert Evans (1 May 2018). "'Compete HARD!' Tory MP explains how UK can UPPER HAND on EU using City banking prowess". Express. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- "Act of Union Bill [HL] 2017-19 — UK Parliament". services.parliament.uk.
- Andy Roden. "Harpenden MP urges Thameslink frequency improvements". Rail Magazine. Bauer Consumer Media Ltd. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
- J P Asher (3 September 2018). "Hitchin and Harpenden MP Bim Afolami given Department for Transport post". HertsAd. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- "Harpenden MP faces backlash online and in-person after announcing he would support Brexit deal". Herts Advertiser. 5 December 2018.
- "All Party Parliamentary Group". www.abcul.org.
- "Financial Inclusion Commission". www.financialinclusioncommission.org.uk.
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 2010–present
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
| Member of Parliament
for Hitchin and Harpenden