A DUDLEY man has vowed to make sure the UK leaves the EU by running as candidate in the upcoming, and controversial, European Parliament elections.

Ahmed Ejaz, who grew up and still lives in the Kates Hill area of the town, is one of the seven Conservative candidates aiming to represent the West Midlands in next week's election.

The elections are going ahead as Britain is still a member of the EU after missing the March 29 departure date, and will see new parties such as Change UK and the Brexit Party campaigning for the first time.

Mr Ejaz works as a locum optician around the Black Country and after campaigning for the Conservatives locally, he says he has decided to 'step forward' and fight to represent the West Midlands in Brussels.

Explaining his decision to stand for an institution that Britain is set to leave in five months time, Mr Ejaz said: “Now it’s time to get more involved and step up and come forward.

“Like other people I am frustrated that we haven’t left the EU yet. I want to make sure that we do leave and the Conservatives are best placed to get us out of the EU.

"Our MEPs should champion Brexit in Brussels and Strasbourg and not seek to disrupt or hinder our progress. They are the ones who will have influence when it comes time for the EU to vote on our departure and we must ensure we have the right people who will not aim to throw a spanner in the works at the last moment."

He labelled the newly formed Brexit Party as 'disruptive' and added: "We are trying to do a job here and they are taking people's attention away from that."

He says he wants to see the Prime Minister's withdrawal agreement put to Parliament again, despite it being rejected by MPs three times.

The European Parliament elections take place on Thursday May 23, with Change UK, the Conservatives, the Greens, Labour, the Liberal Democrats, the Brexit Party and UKIP all fielding candidates to represent the West Midlands region.