THE Labour group has elected a new deputy leader.

Halliwell councillor Akhtar Zaman was appointed to the role by his Labour colleagues on Wednesday night.

He takes over from Cllr Ebrahim Adia who stood down after he was appointed chairman of Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trusts – but he will continue serving as a councillor.

Cllr Zaman, who has represented Halliwell for over 17 years, served on the council’s cabinet between 2006 and 2019 when Labour were in control.

Most recently, he served as the executive cabinet member for corporate resources until May. He currently works in the NHS.

He said: “It is an absolute honour to be deputy leader of the party that I love. I am grateful to my colleagues for their confidence in me.

"I am very conscious of the challenges facing us in Bolton and will work with the leader and the wider Labour group to hold the Conservative-controlled council to account.”

The only other candidate to stand against Cllr Zaman for the position of deputy leader was newly-elected Crompton councillor Martin McMulkin.