Sion Simon’s kidney donation to Labour MP Khalid Mahmood
A prominent Labour politician donated a kidney to one of the party’s MPs, it has been revealed.
Khalid Mahmood had previously refused to say who had given him the life-saving donation in 2014.
But now the donor has been identified as MEP Sion Simon, a former MP and minister and Labour’s candidate in this year’s West Midlands mayoral election.
In a joint interview with the Daily Mirror, Mr Mahmood said he was “hugely indebted” to his party colleague.
“It meant being able to live a normal life, which was getting increasingly difficult,” the MP for Birmingham Perry Barr said, adding: “Essentially what Sion did for me, a huge sacrifice on his part, ended up allowing me to have a normal life again.”
Mr Simon told the Mirror deciding to become a “living donor” had not been a “terribly difficult decision”.
“He was in a very bad way, he needed a kidney,” he said.
“It became obvious that he wasn’t going to get one from anywhere else, so it was a relatively easy decision, and I would urge anyone else who has got the opportunity – it’s actually not as a big a deal as you might think.”
Mr Mahmood discovered he had chronic kidney failure in 2008 and had to spend four hours a day on dialysis.
Speaking to the BBC in 2014 as he prepared to go back to work after the operation, he said he was “at a loss to find the words to say thank you” to the donor – but would not reveal their identity.