UKIP candidate resigns after Lenny Henry tweet
Categories: Latest News
Thursday May 01 2014
BBC News, Sky News, The Daily Mail, The Independent, The Daily Mirror and local paper, Express and Star, all report on the resignation of UKIP candidate for Enfield William Henwood, following his racist comments on Twitter about Lenny Henry. Henwood was also discovered to having posted remarks comparing Islam to the Third Reich.
A UKIP spokesman stated that the resignation was “mutually agreed” to “be the best course”.
The resignation comes as Farage retaliates against claims that his supporters are racist. Farage further stated “I am really sorry that millions of people who have decided to vote UKIP next month now find themselves accused by the political establishment of supporting racism.”
According to the BBC, the British National Party was the only party to defend Henwood’s comments with its leader Nick Griffin asserting that “real racism” was the “bullying by the BBC and by the political elite of ordinary British people, of various parties, who stand up and say what most ordinary people think“, namely “we are going to be an abused minority in our own country”.
The Daily Mail, the Independent and Sky News further reveal that UKIP has been forced to suspend two members with far right links following an internal investigation.
Although the men have not been identified, due to their right to appeal to UKIP’s national executive committee, one man was suspended for being a member of the BNP during 2005-2010 while the second had donated money to the English Defence League. UKIP’s constitution bars individuals who have a history of involvement with far right organisations and parties from becoming members.
The Independent and Sky News further observe that Andre Lampitt, who appeared in UKIP’s election broadcast, was also suspended last week for posting a series of racist and Islamophobic tweets including “Muslims are animals their faith is disgusting their prophet is (a) pedophile”. (sic).
Considering the party’s popularity and opinion polls predicting UKIP’s appeal in the upcoming elections and Farage’s expectations for UKIP to “shake up” British politics, such anti-Muslim and racist sentiments is particularly disconcerting.
Although a recent Independent ComRes survey poll indicated more than half of voters have no intention of supporting the party, the Daily Mail reveals that UKIP is challenging Labour for first place in the European Parliament elections in England as a new survey showed 29% of people in England are expected to vote for UKIP, with Labour just leading ahead at 30%.