Sadiq Khan did not pledge to build 46,000 houses for young Muslims

15 May 2024
What was claimed

A video shows Sadiq Khan saying he will “build 46,000 houses for young Muslims” and provide free education for “‘doctors and engineers’ that just arrived”.

Our verdict

The video does not show Mr Khan saying this. Overlaid text misinterprets his remarks about housing and education during an interview with the Islam Channel. His pledges on housing and education are not intended exclusively for Muslims.

Contrary to claims on social media, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has not promised to build 46,000 houses for young Muslims in London, or give free education to “‘doctors and engineers’ that just arrived”. 

A video showing Mr Khan being interviewed in the run up to the mayoral election on 2 May has been shared on social media, with overlaid text saying: “Mayor of Londonistan 46,000 houses for young Muslims to be built in London” and “free education for the underpaid, underskilled ‘doctors and engineers’ that just arrived”. Several Facebook posts have also shared a screenshot of the video with the same text.

Other posts shared the video with a caption quoting him saying: “The children of Muslims who are underemployed or in jobs not suited to their great skills will have subsidies and I will build housing for those of Islamic faith.”

Someone has commented on the video being shared on TikTok, saying: “Is this real or AI?”, while another says: “If you believe this video is real then you are thick, it’s AI generated.” We’ve previously written about a potentially deepfake audio clip supposedly recording Mr Khan that we could find no evidence was real. 

However, while this is a genuine interview with Mr Khan—who was re-elected as London’s mayor for a third consecutive term with 43.8% of the vote—he did not make the comments attributed to him in the posts. 

A spokesperson for Mr Khan said such claims are “completely false” and added that: “The Mayor did not say these words—and can clearly be heard discussing his policy of providing free skills training to any young Londoner who is unemployed or in low-paid work, as well as talking about the need to build more housing for all.”

A longer version of the clip was shared on YouTube by the Islam Channel with the caption: “How is Sadiq Khan’s manifesto going to affect the Muslim community?” While his answers are given in the context of a conversation about the Islamic community, he does not pledge free education, housing or subsidies exclusively for Muslims.

He specifically says: “Every Londoner who is on low income or not working will get free training to get the skills for jobs that are created in London.” 

He also speaks about the issue of housing and the public, particularly minority communities, being priced out of where they want to live for religious or cultural reasons, such as proximity to mosques or halal shops. He says: “So we’re going to build at least 40,000 council homes, at least 6,000 rent control homes.”

Mr Khan’s manifesto includes a “key pledge” to build 40,000 new council homes by 2030 and also says it will see 6,000 homes as part of the first phase of Rent Control Homes (where authorities can set rent levels or limit increases) being built “in areas where they are needed most”. It does not specify that they will be for a particular demographic. 

There’s no direct mention of “doctors or engineers”, or specific “subsidies” for Muslims, in either the clip being shared on social media, the longer version of the interview or Mr Khan’s manifesto.  

We’ve fact checked many claims relating to Mr Khan before, including claims London council tax is 71% higher than when he took office and that he said people should learn Arabic to “create harmony”, as well as whether he plans to introduce a pay-per-mile road charging scheme in the capital. 

Image courtesy of Green Investment Summit

Full Fact fights bad information

Bad information ruins lives. It promotes hate, damages people’s health, and hurts democracy. You deserve better.