UK’s most influential black person named

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Media captionWhy has Gina Miller been named as the country’s most influential black person?

Businesswoman Gina Miller has been named as Britain’s most influential black person.

The 52-year-old led the successful Brexit legal challenge which ruled parliament had to vote on whether Theresa May could trigger Article 50.

Ms Miller topped the 2018 Powerlist of 100 people, which recognises those of African and African Caribbean heritage.

British Vogue editor Edward Enninful and grime artist Stormzy have also been included in this year’s list.

Those named were decided by an independent panel – including former High Court judge Dame Linda Dobbs and former Apprentice winner Tim Campbell. They rated nominees on their “ability to change lives and alter events”.


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‘Abuse daily’

Previous number ones in the Powerlist include former children’s laureate Malorie Blackman, philanthropist Mo Ibrahim, architect David Adjaye and Baronesses Scotland and Amos.

Nearly half of the list for 2018 were women – headed by Ms Miller, the founder of wealth management company SCM.

She came to prominence in the past year when she argued that starting talks to leave the EU without a parliamentary vote was “undemocratic” because it involved a change in law.

<figure class=”media-landscape” has-caption full-width”> Image copyright PA/BBC/Getty Images/Powerlist

Image caption Boxer Anthony Joshua, film director Amma Asante, TV presenter Ade Adepitan, and lawyer Grace Ononiwu (pictured clockwise from top left) are recognised in the list

In January, the Supreme Court upheld her challenge ruling Prime Minister Theresa May could not start the process of leaving the EU until MPs and peers gave their backing.

The UK is due to leave the EU in March 2019.

After the ruling, Ms Miller said she had received death threats and “offensive, racist and hateful” abuse.

On receiving her title, she said: “It’s amazing to get an accolade when what I’ve done has solicited a huge amount of abuse.

“To have somebody acknowledge me is extraordinarily kind and counters a lot of what I still get on a daily basis.”

The Powerlist top 10

  1. Gina Miller – business owner, political activist
  2. Ric Lewis – chief executive and chairman of Tristan Capital Partners
  3. Ismail Ahmed – World Remit founder
  4. Sharon White – Ofcom chief
  5. Dr Nira Chamberlain – professional mathematician
  6. Jacky Wright – chief digital and information officer, HMRC
  7. Sandra Wallace – UK managing partner, DLA Piper
  8. Professor Laura Serrant – Professor of Nursing, Sheffield Hallam University
  9. Dr Shirley J Thompson – music composer, visionary and cultural activist
  10. Edward Enninful – British Vogue editor-in-chief

Powerlist 2018 publisher Michael Eboda said he was “proud” about the number of women on this year’s list.

He added: “Gina was a shoo-in this year for number one, Brexit is the most important political event to happen this century.

“Gina’s role in ensuring a sovereignty of parliament was recognised by the courts has been monumental and has set a precedent that will last hundreds of years.”


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