LABOUR leadership hopeful Anas Sarwar has named a former MSP to chair his campaign for the top party job.

Mr Sarwar is taking on Scottish Labour health spokesperson, Monica Lennon, to replace Richard Leonard who unexpectedly quit the post last week.

Mr Sarwar, the party’s constitutional spokesperson, has announced that trade unionist and former MSP Karen Whitefield will chair his campaign.

Ms Whitefield is a senior official with the Usdaw union and previously represented Airdrie and Shotts at Holyrood.

Usdaw has nominated Mr Sarwar for the role.

Ms Whitefield said: “I have known Anas for many years and I have campaigned alongside him. I am convinced that he will make a strong and determined leader for our party.

“He is committed to bringing us together and rebuilding people's faith and confidence in Scottish Labour.

“I look forward to working with him during a positive and friendly election that demonstrates the very best of our party and our movement.”

Mr Sarwar said: “Karen is a hugely respected figure in our wider movement, championing workers and fighting on their behalf.

“Thank you to all the members, trade unionists, councillors and parliamentarians who have already backed my campaign.

“In the days ahead I’ll be outlining my plans to rebuild Scottish Labour so that we can rebuild Scotland together.”