HUMZA Yousaf has congratulated Sadiq Khan after the Labour politician stormed to victory in the London mayoral election.

Incumbent mayor Khan beat his nearest rival, Tory candidate Susan Hall, in a contest beset by criticism of his decision to expand London’s ultra low emission zone.

Labour leader SKeir Starmer said he was confident of Khan’s victory before declarations began, as he counted mayoral victories for his party in Liverpool, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, and in Greater Manchester where Andy Burnham returned to power.

Khan needed to win a simple majority of ballots cast, as the rules for the mayoral race were changed to a first-past-the-post voting system ahead of the latest election.

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He secured just over 1,088,000 votes to be re-elected London Mayor, a majority of some 275,000 over Conservative rival Ms Hall, who secured just under 813,000 votes.

Shortly after the result of the election was announced, outgoing First Minister Humza Yousaf took to social media to congratulate Khan.

He said: “I congratulate @SadiqKhan on his historic re-election.

“His victory is all the more significant given it was in the face of a climate denying, xenophobic opposition campaign. A victory for progressive values”.

It is the first time any candidate for London mayor has won a third term of office, with Khan’s predecessors Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone both having served two terms.

Khan fought a re-election campaign on promises to end rough sleeping in the capital by 2030, and to take further steps to curtail air pollution and climate change.

Runner-up Hall’s key pledge was to roll back the Ulez expansion which the Labour mayor began last August, a measure she said was part of a “war on motorists”.

With 106 out of 107 of the local councils declared on Saturday, the Conservatives had suffered a drubbing, with a net loss of 396 councillors, and the loss of 10 councils.

Labour won control of eight councils with a net gain of 231 seats, while the Liberal Democrats gained 97 seats and the Greens 64.

Labour has lost seats in a smattering of council seats to independents and George Galloway’s Workers Party of Britain, apparently over its position on Gaza.