Anna Lo said: “I am extremely pleased to have been chosen to stand for Alliance in next year’s Assembly election. South Belfast needs every one of its MLAs to be focused on the Assembly, instead of having anyone juggling time at Stormont with their time at Westminster. It is totally incompatible to be both an MLA and an MP.
“The Alliance Party has shown that we are the only party that prioritises working towards ending segregation, while others have merely paid lip service to this important and very costly issue.
“Since becoming an MLA I have helped constituents regarding welfare, housing and planning issues amongst others. I also sit on the Social Development and Regional Development Committees and play an active role in scrutinising the work of the Stormont Executive.
“All of the other parties have prioritised the constitutional issue to the detriment of bread and butter issues that affect people on an everyday basis. If re-elected I will continue to work on the ground on behalf of everyone and, in particularly, for the most vulnerable members of our society.”
Biography of Anna Lo
Anna was born in Hong Kong and worked in London for a year prior to coming to live in Northern Ireland in 1974. For several years, she made regular contributions to the BBC Chinese Service about the Chinese community and Northern Ireland affairs. In 1978, she started the first ever English evening class for Chinese people in Northern Ireland in a further education college.
Following a career break to have her two sons, she joined the Chinese Welfare Association in 1987 as a community interpreter. Four years later she returned to full-time education and qualified as a social worker from the University of Ulster in 1993 and worked in a health and social services trust and Barnardos.
She took up the post of Director of the Chinese Welfare Association in 1997. Anna was the first vice chair of the Northern Ireland Council for Ethnic Minorities and a founding commissioner for the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland. She was also the first chair of the South Belfast Partnership Board.
Anna was awarded an MBE in 1999 for services to ethnic minorities. In March 2007, she was elected to serve as the MLA for South Belfast for the Alliance Party, and was consequently the first Chinese-born person to be elected to a legislative parliament in Europe.
Anna is a member of the Social Development and Regional Development Assembly Committees.