THE wife of a Blackburn councillor has undergone a life-saving kidney transplant after a donor was found following a six-year wait.

Coun Salim Mulla’s wife Sayeeda had been waiting for a donor since suffering kidney failure in both kidneys in 2005.

She was taken to Manchester Royal Infirmary to undergo surgery after a suitable match was finally found.

Coun Mulla, who is also the secretary of the Lancashire Council of Mosques, said his wife was in ‘good spirits’ as she stepped up her recovery in hospital.

The couple, of Ripon Street, Blackburn, have five children, as well as a large number of extended family members in the area.

Coun Mulla left a council meeting after just 10 minutes when he received a text message to say a donor had been found on Thursday.

He said: “The consultant is coming every single day to check on her and she is going to be in hospital for at least two weeks.

“She has not been able to get out of bed yet because it has only been a couple of days, but yesterday they managed to sit her up, so that was excellent.

“She is talking and has told me the doctor visited her this morning and put both thumbs up, so that is very encouraging, it really is.

“The whole family is absolutely ecstatic - it is jubilation at this moment in time.

“We are going to find out who the donor was and we will be making contact, and we will become friends for life.”

People from the South Asian and black communities living in the UK are three times more likely to need a kidney transplant, but just 1.2 per cent and 0.4 per cent of people from these communities have joined the NHS Organ Donor Register.

Due to the shortage of compatible donors, South Asian and black patients on average have to wait nearly twice as long as a white person for an organ to become available.

In 2006 Coun Mulla appeared in a television documentary highlighting the chronic lack of donors from the Asian community.

He said: “I have been appealing to the Muslim community to come forward as donors.

“When my wife is better I will continue to work with the key associations in order to encourage more people to donate their organs.”