You are viewing blog items for January 2014.
posted by: Jennifer Williams | on: Tuesday, 28 January 2014, 21:12
UKIP'S candidate in the Wythenshawe and Sale East by-election took nearly £100,000 of EU cash to prop up his business, the M.E.N can reveal.
Cheshire tycoon John Bickley's tech firm Genemation accepted the grant from a Brussels-backed fund but has now decided to stand on an anti-Europe ticket.
In recent days, Mr Bickley, widely tipped to come second in next month's poll, has slammed British governments for 'outsourcing' control to the EU.
His party's central message is that the country should withdraw altogether from Europe.
But the M.E.N can reveal that when his software company was looking to relocate fromManchester to Liverpool in 2006 - at the time in debt to the tune of nearly £1m - it accepted £95,000 from the Liverpool Seed Fund.
The £27m investment pot - £20m of which was provided by the EU – had been set up to help boost regional growth.
At the time the company moved, Mr Bickley - then CEO, company secretary and a director of Genemation - told the Liverpool Daily Post: "The backing and support from the Liverpool Seed Fund was crucial and we are looking forward to working closely with the fund as we develop."
The company went into liquidation in 2009, owing more than £450,000.
UKIP's fortunes in the upcoming Wythenshawe and Sale East by-election have been the subject of widespread speculation ahead of the European polls on May 22.
The party's central policy is that Britain should withdraw from the European Union.
Mr Bickley was announced as the party's candidate last Thursday and in an interview shortly afterwards he said: "Parliament has outsourced the running of this country to the EU.
"It needs to take responsibility. I love Europe, its people and culture, but Labour and the Conservatives have subjugated - by stealth - control of this country to the EU and its quangos."
Speaking to the M.E.N. he said his stance was in no way hypocritical, because he was not a member of UKIP at the time.
He added: "If you are a director of a company and you are responsible for raising money for that company, you would be in breach of your duty to the shareholders if you introduced your political belief system."
He ended up make a loss from his involvement in the firm, he said - while standing by his belief that the country is better off outside the EU.
"In terms of sources of money, there's plenty of sources of money out there in he market place ... the money that may come from the EU is a pittance in the context."
Posted: 28 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Adam Bienkov | on: Tuesday, 28 January 2014, 12:13
Nigel Farage's attempts to distance Ukip from the extreme views of its members fell apart this morning after a major party donor took out an extraordinary newspaper advert describing homosexuality as an "abomination".
Demetri Marchessini, who donated £10,000 to Ukip last year, paid the Telegraph for a bizarre "open letter" to columnist Libby Purves complaining about a recent article she had written in the Times.
In a long and rambling text, Marchessini complains about Purves' description of Russian president Vladimir Putin's policies on homosexuality as bigoted.
"There are at least 12 places in the bible that describe homosexuality as an 'abomination'," he wrote.
"What Miss Purves and many others cannot grasp is the fact that when our government made homosexuality legal, it did not make it moral.
"Governments can decide on laws, but only God decides on morality. How can anybody, let alone Miss Purvis (sic), tell people what they should think about homosexuality?"
The letter contains a lengthy complaint about Purves' use of the word "homophobic" which he claims is "a phoney word" which "cannot be found in any dictionary".
The word has been included in the Oxford English Dictionary for at least two decades.
The donor described the word as a combination of Latin and Greek roots, adding: "Anyone who uses it is uneducated."
In fact, both 'homo' and 'phobia' have Greek roots.
This is not the first time Marchessini has caused trouble for Ukip. Last year he hit the headlines after claiming that unwed mothers "should be given a good smack" and claiming that date rape allegations "cannot be taken seriously".
"As there is no violent act, it is difficult to know whether any rape took place," he wrote.
"The woman’s allegation of rape means nothing. Women have been making such allegations since the beginning of time."
He also published a book titled "Women in Trousers: A Rear View" in which he claimed that women wearing trousers were committing "hostile behaviour - they are deliberately dressing in a way that is opposite to what men would like".
A spokesperson for Ukip said they condemned Marchessini's opinions on trousers.
Posted: 28 Jan 2014 | There are 6 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Paul Hutcheon | on: Monday, 27 January 2014, 19:16
UKIP Scotland's interim chair has denied signing a petition supporting a football steward sacked for standing as a British National Party candidate.
The name of "Arthur Misty Thackeray", Ukip's top official north of the Border, appeared on the petition but he denied all knowledge of the steward.
The Sunday Herald last week revealed that Thackeray had made a series of offensive posts on Facebook on religion.
In 2011, he wrote: "Real Catholicism and Real Islamism are far from antagonists with both having an outwardly benign image but inwardly sharing a fascist ideology of extreme submissive conservatism and imperialism ..."
He also took aim at Holyrood: "[T]here's more chance of winning the lottery two weeks running than getting an openly Rangers-supporting MSP into the chamber of the institutionally catholicised pretendy parliament .. lol." Thackeray, who works in the security industry, also made claims about Glasgow City Council's policy on marches: "No wonder the blue half of my city say G.C.C actually stands for the Glasgow Celtic Council for Gays Catholics Communists eh.lol. NS!"
The comments prompted Jonathan Stanley, a senior Ukip member in Scotland, to urge him to attend an anti-sectarianism course.
Thackeray is now facing questions over an online petition about a steward who was sacked by Middlesbrough FC due to far-right political activity. The petition was started by a one-time BNP candidate and read: "We the undersigned petition Middlesbrough Football Club to reverse their decision in sacking Barry Towers for standing in the local council elections for the British National Party."
The name Arthur Misty Thackeray is on the petition, as are more than 200 other names.
SNP MEP Alyn Smith said: "Mr Thackeray needs to answer questions on why his name appeared on this petition. The people of Scotland have a proud tradition of supporting justice and tolerance; it is for this reason that Ukip will continue to be rejected at the polls north of the Border."
Thackeray said: "The only Barry Towers I'm aware of is a high-rise block in Wales."
He said the suggestion he had signed the petition was "ridiculous", adding: "I am well aware a Walter Mitty character is feeding misinformation to anti-Ukip and pro-separation media outlets to demonise and destabilise myself and the party."
Posted: 27 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Paul Hutcheon | on: Monday, 27 January 2014, 19:08
The UKIP Scotland civil war has intensified after 10 party members made a complaint about their top European candidate for allegedly making a series of false statements.
David Coburn, who topped Ukip's Brussels list for Scotland in controversial circumstances, stands accused of falsely claiming that leader Nigel Farage asked him to stand. The written complaint also alleges that Coburn had described himself as the party's "Scottish spokesman" when he was not.
Ukip, a party opposed to the EU and mass immigration, has enjoyed success south of the Border and is tipped to be the big winner in May's election for the European Parliament.
The party was also hoping to win an MEP's seat in Scotland but the vicious infighting is undermining its efforts.
Until recently, the Scottish party was led by Lord Monckton and chaired by Mike Scott-Hayward. However, both they and other figures believed a Ukip faction - including former candidate Otto Inglis - was planning a coup.
The divisions flared up during Ukip's internal contest to select candidates for the European election.
Six of the shortlisted candidates, including Monckton and Scott-Hayward, quit the race in protest at the tactics allegedly used by Inglis.
However, the party pushed ahead with the ballot and Coburn, Ukip's London chair, topped the poll.
Ten Ukip Scotland figures - including Scott-Hayward, one-time fundraiser Malcolm Macaskill and another senior figure, Paul Henke - have now signed an official complaint against Coburn. The letter includes several allegations.
The complaint alleges Coburn "falsely stated" that "Nigel Farage had asked him to put his name forward for MEP selection in Scotland".
They also allege that Coburn falsely denied making the claim about Farage.
During the recent industrial dispute between Ineos and trade union Unite, the complainants allege Coburn put out a statement in which he "falsely stated" that he was Ukip's "Scottish spokesman".
The Glasgow-born candidate has also been accused of falsely saying on television that the six candidates resigned because they did not like the result of the ballot. The 10 members claim these alleged statements amount to breaches of the Ukip constitution and rules.
Following the disputed internal poll, Farage sacked Monckton by email and Scott-Hayward resigned as chair. Misty Thackeray, who is on the right of the party, is now interim chair.
Hencke told the Sunday Herald: "I expect the complaint to be investigated properly. I believe Ukip to be an up-front party run by honourable people. We should have honourable people as candidates."
The trouble comes after Farage suffered arguably his worst week as party leader. Ukip was forced to suspend an Oxfordshire councillor after he blamed flooding on the decision to legalise gay marriage, while Farage was also criticised for backing an end to the ban on handguns, and saying that women who had children were worth less to City firms.
"We need a proper gun-licensing system which, to a large extent, we already have and I think the ban on handguns is ludicrous," he said.
He also opened fire at his party's own manifesto from 2010, saying: "It was drivel, 486 pages of drivel. I didn't read it ... it was a nonsense, and we've put that behind us and moved on to a professional footing."
SNP MEP Alyn Smith said: "Ukip are a total farce and barely exist as a party in Scotland - a fact confirmed by their abysmal showing at the Cowdenbeath by-election where, yet again, in a Scottish election they failed even to hold on to their deposit."
A UKIP spokesman said: "We have not received said complaint but when we do we will process it according to the party's rules."
Posted: 27 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Matt Chorley | on: Monday, 27 January 2014, 16:22
A Ukip MEP has admitted one of the only reasons he turns up in Brussels is to claim £200,000 in allowances.
Trevor Colman has not done anything in the European Parliament in the last year, and has only taken part in half of votes since 2009.
The South West MEP insisted he could not see the point in making speeches in the Parliament, and instead claimed the taxpayers’ money to fund an anti-EU website.
All MEPs receive a salary of £78,000 but must ‘clock in’ to the Parliament building in order to receive various allowances.
However, Mr Colman has only made speeches or asked questions just 19 times, well behind the average of the five other MEPs in the South West.
Asked whether allowances were a factor influencing his decision, Mr Colman: ‘I wouldn’t say getting the allowances is one of the main motivations, I’m trying to be fair about it, it is a factor, of course it is.’
He was confronted about his expenses during an interview on BBC’s Sunday Politics West show.
Mr Colman said: ‘Why make a speech when you know that it is totally ineffective? That you are there talking to a gallery of about six people, I don’t quite see the point of me doing that.
‘It’s not that I’m not doing anything, I am trying to get us out of this mess and that can only be achieved over here.’
Last year a study found The shocking study found that cosseted MEPs now have incomes up to 20 times higher than the people they represent.
While millions of families across Europe have had their incomes squeezed, most MEPs have enjoyed large increases in their salaries – while continuing to vote through ever-higher budgets for the EU.
The study found that MEPs enjoy an average income of £182,826 including allowances for attendance and travel.
Mr Colman admitted turning up at the European Parliament to ensure he receives his huge allowances, most of which he spends on a website aimed at removing the UK from the European Union.
He added: ‘The European Parliament has no power, it can’t make or change legislation, it has little or no power, we are in fact just a pantomime taking players to make the illusion of giving democracy where none exists.
The BBC found Mr Colman – who is standing down in May - employs five full time staff, who mainly work on the website, another woman who covers Brussels and Strasbourg, and a part time employee.
Graham Watson, a Lib Dem MEP, said: ‘There is a massive amount that goes on in the European parliament and that’s why most of the members are there full time doing their jobs,
‘I’m sorry if Trevor Colman finds it so boring, but I would have to ask the question why did he stand in the first place.’
However Ukip chairman Steve Crowther defended Mr Colman’s conduct.
‘We have a specific job to do and we are elected to do it, that is to campaign and work for Britain to come out of the European Parliament,’ he said.
posted by: . | on: Monday, 27 January 2014, 09:31
A parent whose child was killed in the 1996 Dunblane massacre has joined the chorus of disapproval at comments on firearms legislation made by Ukip leader Nigel Farage.
Mr Farage told a radio phone-in that the ban on handguns, introduced after Thomas Hamilton killed 16 children and their teacher, was "ludicrous".
John Crozier's five-year-old daughter Emma was shot dead at Dunblane Primary School. Mr Crozier, who still lives in Dunblane, said he was convinced the handgun ban had meant that, unlike in other countries, there had been no repeat in the UK of a school gun massacre.
He said: "A whole generation have grown up since the handgun ban was introduced and thankfully there have been no more school shootings in Britain. How many lives have been saved? Just look at the USA, where the number of children killed and injured by people with guns in schools and colleges is obscene.
"It is not the ban on handguns that is ludicrous, it is the foolishness of those who would risk our children's lives so that a few people can play with guns."
Mr Crozier, whose daughter is buried beside her best friend Joanna Ross, another of the children killed by Hamilton, added: "No doubt Farage is trying to cash in on the money that those who sell and manufacture guns throw at politicians who show them support.
"As someone who has had to endure the agony of losing a child to gun violence I urge people to treat Farage and Ukip with the derision they deserve."
Graham Houston, SNP councillor for Dunblane, echoed Mr Crozier's comments. He said: "I'm amazed at the insensitivity that Mr Farage has displayed in making these comments. It just shows how disconnected he is from the people of Dunblane and Scotland."
posted by: Jennifer Williams | on: Monday, 27 January 2014, 09:18
Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy has hit back at UKIP calls for handguns to be legalised – warning we should be 'grateful' Britain lacks a US-style gun culture.
He said there was no need to revisit the debate, arguing it would inevitably make it easier for criminals to obtain firearms.
His comments came after party leader Nigel Farage called the current handgun ban 'ludicrous' and called for it to be reversed.
He later told the MEN there was 'almost no link' between gun ownership and crime .
Legalisation would in no way cause a rise in firearms offences in the city – or see it regain the 'Gunchester' tag, he said.
But Sir Peter dismissed the comments – saying nobody other than Mr Farage was questioning the ban.
“The trouble is that even if we license handguns, we end up with more in the system,” he said.
“We know at the moment it's actually pretty hard to get a firearm in Manchester.
“We should all be grateful that we have got such tight gun control in this country – when you look at the States, it's awful over there.
“We should be pleased we have had the success we have had.”
Gun crime has fallen dramatically in Manchester in recent years.
In its darkest days parts of the city were dominated by bloody gang feuds that saw a string of brutal executions – and innocent bystanders also gunned down.
Since then police have worked with local communities as part of their specialist gun crime unit Xcalibre, resulting in just 11 shootings in the six months to October, compared to nearly 150 in 2007.
Speaking to the MEN yesterday during a by-election walkabout in Wythenshawe, Mr Farage stressed that only 'sensible, decent people' would be allowed to own handguns under his plan.
But Sir Peter said the debate was 'absolutely' not one he wished to see reignited, adding:“We would rather dwell on the success we have had, which has transformed the reputation of Manchester and we should be grateful we don't have the problems other countries have had.
“I don't think anybody else [in this country] is having the debate.”
posted by: Rowena Mason | on: Saturday, 25 January 2014, 21:16
Nigel Farage's attempt to distance himself from the "drivel" and "nonsense" in Ukip's policy documents at the last election was undermined on Friday after it emerged he wrote the foreword to the party's manifesto and helped to launch it at an event in London.
The Ukip leader said he had never read the 486 pages of policy documents that were published alongside Ukip's manifesto in 2010, which included plans to repaint trains in traditional colours, bring in a uniform for taxi drivers and ban offshore windfarms amid fears they could hurt fish.
After disowning the entire collection of policies, he told LBC 97.3 that they were put together by Ukip's then policy chief, David Campbell Bannerman, who is now a Conservative MEP.
He said: "We had a manifesto – and I'm going to put some inverted commas around it – that was produced in 2010. It was basically a series of policy discussion papers that was put up on the website as a manifesto.
"It was 486 pages long. I'm pleased to say that the idiot that wrote it has now left us and joined the Conservatives. They are very welcome to him.
"Malcolm Pearson, who was leader of Ukip at the time, was picked up in interviews for not knowing the manifesto. Of course he didn't know the manifesto, it was 486 pages of excessive detail.
"Eighteen months ago, I said I wanted the whole lot taken down off the website. We reject the whole thing. We'll start again with a blank sheet of paper. So there's nothing new in that story.
"I didn't read it. It was drivel, 486 pages of drivel. I didn't read it and nor did the party leader."
But following his claims, a video started circulating of Farage speaking as Ukip's chief spokesman at the launch of the manifesto in Westminster in 2010, promising straight talking about the party's policies. The Ukip leader also co-authored the summary 16-page manifesto that now appears to have disappeared from the party's website.
The 2010 policy documents, which also appear to have been blocked,detail plans such as capping the number of foreign players in football teams, bringing back "proper dress" at the theatre, scrapping paid maternity leave, allowing corporal punishment in schools and holding referendums on new places of worship such as mosques.
Other ideas included making the London Circle line on the tube circular again, investigating alleged discrimination against white people at the BBC and teaching school children more about the role of Arabs and African states in slavery.
Farage's attempt to distance Ukip from its manifesto of four years ago may put him under more scrutiny about what the party stands for in the runup to the May elections.
On Thursday, the usually assured politician floundered on live television as he was asked about the party's proposal to scrap Trident, saying he was not sure where the interviewer had got this suggestion from.
When told it was on the Ukip website, he said: "When it comes to websites, I'm not the expert."
Challenged over a compulsory dress code for taxi drivers, he said: "Do we? News to me."
And asked about a policy to repaint trains in traditional colours, Farage said: "I've never read that. I've no idea what you're talking about."
However, he said it was not obvious nonsense that he could cut £90bn of taxes and increase spending by £30bn, even though that would be "ambitious".
Posted: 25 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: . | on: Saturday, 25 January 2014, 17:16
Controversial MEP Godfrey Bloom reportedly shocked attendees at an Oxford Union debate, calling a disabled student 'Richard III', after the monarch who famously had a defomity.
Bloom, who lost the Ukip whip for a series of bizarre gaffes including calling a roomful of women 'sluts', was speaking on the motion “Post-war Britain has seen too much immigration.”
His fellow debater was Spectator columnist Douglas Murray, who published a blog this morning detailing the incident at the debate, where the motion was opposed by Lord Singh, Nadhim Zahawi MP and Monica Ali.
According to Channel 4's Michael Crick, who was hit on the head with a brochure by Bloom at the Ukip conference, Bloom was confronted by a male student who had a disability, and who disagreed with his take on immigration.
The student was David Browne, a second year law student at Merton College, from Carryduff, Northern Ireland.
Bloom then asked Browne: “Are you Richard III?”, according to reports from Crick and Murray.
"What Mr Bloom managed, however, was beyond my worst fears. Nevermind his referring to Monica Ali as ‘sweetheart’," Murray wrote in the Spectator.
The student had "a rather clear disability.. slightly lame in one leg" according to Murray, who said he did not know what the disability was, but recalled him making an "impassioned speech against my side of the argument, ending in an unnecessary attack on Mr Bloom".
The student called Bloom out on the attack, saying the personal attack meant he had lost the argument, according to Murray.
"It was an awful moment. I thought the student’s speech misguided and wrong. But why anybody, let alone an elected politician, would taunt him for his disability is beyond me. It was a gruesome moment – ghastly, disgraceful and deeply telling of Mr Bloom. I was glad to have the opportunity to speak with the student afterwards,"Murray wrote on the blog.
Bloom told Channel 4 the student had not taken offence. “We enjoyed a good drink and a laugh until one o’clock in the morning on the strength of it.”
Browne told Channel 4: “I didn’t think it was a very nice thing to say. I wasn’t happy with the remark.”
But he added that he had drunk with Bloom after the incident, “We didn’t bring it up again. He’s a very interesting man to talk to," he said.
Richard III is believed to have had physical deformities, including a hunchback, but some of the more outrageous descriptions of his appearance, and his portrayal in Shakespeare's play, can be attributed to the Tudor propaganda of the era.
Posted: 25 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Saturday, 25 January 2014, 17:03
Posted: 25 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Georgia Graham | on: Thursday, 23 January 2014, 21:22
Nigel Farage has disowned the entire 2010 Ukip manifesto and said every party policy is under review.
Mr Farage said new policies would be “similar in flavour” to his past manifesto pledges which included bringing in a dress code for taxi drivers, repainting trains traditional colours and introducing a dress code for taxi drivers.
Speaking on BBC2's Daily Politics, Mr Farage said that he had not been in charge of the party when the 2010 manifesto was pulled together – although he had led the group between 2006 to 2009.
He added that because the party’s manifesto was almost 500 pages long for the last election there were “all sort of bits” of it that he “did not know.” However Mr Farage co-authored the foreword to the manifesto and was Ukip’s chief spokesman.
Quizzed on the BBC 2’s Daily Politics show on a party proposal to scrap Trident Mr Farage appeared confused and asked where the interviewer had got such a suggestion from.
When he was told it was on the Ukip website, he said: "When it comes to websites, I'm not the expert." Challenged over a compulsory dress code for taxi drivers, he said: "Do we? News to me.”
In response to another policy to require British trains to be repainted in traditional colours Mr Farage said: "Absolutely not, I have never read that, I have no idea what your talking about.”
He added: “Look, under the last leadership and in the 2010 election we managed to present a manifesto that was 486 pages long. So you can quote me all sorts of bits of it that I will not know. That's why I've said none of it stands today and we will launch it all after the European elections."
The 2010 manifesto has since been deleted from the Ukip website. A Ukip spokesman refused to provide a copy of the manifesto and said the document was no longer “relevant” and had been removed “months ago.”
Mr Farage was also branded “laughable” as he defended his arguments that women are “worth less” and do not face discrimination to City firms.
Louise Cooper, a chartered financial analyst and blogger, told Mr Farage that he was “talking out of his bottom” for saying women were not paid less because of discrimination by firms in the financial sector but instead because of the "lifestyle choice" some made by having a baby.
Mr Farage, who has two daughters Victoria, 13, and Isabelle, 8, said: “Pre-big bang, when I first worked in the city, it was a deeply sexist place - it really was. That’s all gone completely. I don’t believe - in the big banks, brokerage houses, Lloyds of London and everywhere else in the city - I do not believe that there is any discrimination against women at all.
Ms Cooper, herself a working mother, told Mr Farage: “For all the working mothers out there who are battling day to day, and I know lots of them in the City, who are discriminated against, who are paid less than their male colleagues, who are looked over for promotion, I say on behalf of them: shame on you. And I say double shame on you because you actually have daughters.
She added: “What kind of example are you setting to your daughters by saying what you said?"
Posted: 23 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Leila Haddou | on: Thursday, 23 January 2014, 21:05
Ukip's latest parliamentary hopeful has refused to criticise homophobic comments made by one of the party's councillors who blamed recent flooding on gay marriage.
John Bickley, who is standing for Ukip in next month's Wythenshawe and Sale East byelection, said "I am not going to condemn someone for their religious beliefs."
But he added that the party was right to suspend David Silvester, a councillor in Henley-on-Thames who said gay marriage was a "spiritual disease" that caused the floods over the Christmas and New Year period.
Bickley, launching his campaign in Sale, Greater Manchester, on Thursday, said: "I think it's absolutely OK for somebody to have a personal view, whether you agree [with it] or not."
He said Ukip was growing very quickly, and that it was inevitable that there would be a range of views within a larger party membership.
Bickley hopes to overturn Labour's 7,575 majority on 13 February. The byelection was triggered by the death of MP Paul Goggins this month.
Bickley, a former Labour supporter and son of a "staunch trade unionist" who grew up on the Wythenshawe housing estate, joined Ukip in 2011.
"Labour has let down the working class, and my father, a lifelong supporter [of the Labour party] and trade unionist, would be turning in his grave," he said on Thursday.
Paul Nuttall, deputy leader of Ukip, said he was confident Bickley would poll strongly, and "change the stereotype that we are a southern party made up of ex-Conservatives".
Nuttall, who had been mooted as a possible candidate for the seat, said: "I'm making it my life's mission to prove that Ukip does appeal to voters in the north."
Bickley, 60, runs his own firm selling a mobile phone app producing personalised greetings cards. But he has also worked for EMI records in sales and marketing and Psygnosis, a video games firm bought by Sony.
He said he decided to enter politics after becoming disgusted with David Cameron for reneging on the Lisbon treaty. "Parliament has outsourced the running of this country to the EU, it needs to take responsibility," Bickley said. "I love Europe, it's people and culture, but Labour and the Conservatives have subjugated – by stealth – control of this country to the EU and its quangos."
In the 2010 general election Ukip came in fifth place, polling 1,405 votes in a constituency that includes the affluent suburb of Sale as well as Wythenshawe, which is among the most deprived areas of Greater Manchester.
In Sale town centre on Thursday Caroline Lewis said she was a recent convert to Ukip, having previously voted Conservative.
"I'm voting for them precisely because of immigration and Europe. Our hospitals are at breaking point, our pensioners are dying from the cold. It's all wrong," said the 37-year-old telesales executive.
The other major parties have yet to announce their byelection candidate. On Friday Labour will chose from a shortlist of five: Manchester city councillors Rosa Battle (niece of the former Labour MP John Battle), Catherine Hynes and Suzannah Reeves; Mike Kane, acting chief executive of Movement for Change, a network of community organisers; and Sophie Taylor, a physiotherapist and Trafford councillor.
Posted: 23 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Wednesday, 22 January 2014, 13:14
Posted: 22 Jan 2014 | There are 4 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Dominic Glover | on: Wednesday, 22 January 2014, 00:28
A senior figure in Ukip has been told to seek counselling over sectarian rants by his own party.
Arthur Thackeray, the interim chairman of the EU-phobic party in Scotland, has been told to get help after he was accused of spouting bigoted views in a series of inflammatory online posts.
Thackeray laid into Glasgow city council by accusing it of being run by homosexuals and Catholics – who engaged in a conspiracy to keep out different voices, he apparently suggested.
Thackeray, a councillor in Glasgow's Wellhouse and Queenslie ward, tapped into deep-seated sectarian tensions between Protestants and Catholics in Scotland's second city with his comments.
According to the Herald, Thackeray said: "There's more chance of winning the lottery two weeks running than getting an openly Rangers-supporting MSP into the chamber of the institutionally catholicised pretendy parliament ... lol."
Blasting Glasgow City Council, Thackeray continued: "No wonder the blue half of my city say GCC actually stands for the Glasgow Celtic Council for gays Catholics Communists eh. Lol. NS!"
As a result, Thackeray has been instructed to get helped from a charity called Nil by Mouth, which campaigns against sectarianism in Scotland. It has yet to agree to the request from Ukip's head of policy, John Stanley.
A Nil by Mouth spokesman said: "We've received a request from Ukip in London for its Scottish branch to engage with our sectarianism awareness programme.
"We will give this request due consideration should the Scottish branch follow up this contact."
Condemning Thackeray's online outburst, Ukip's own LGBT wing welcomed Stanley's therapy instruction - and called on the chairman to consider his position.
Thomas Booker told IBTimes UK: "I think that if he is hostile to homosexuals and sees same-sex people as in opposition to him, then he needs to reconsider his position in the party. I will always defend people's right to freedom of speech but saying things which are against the party's beliefs is intolerable.
"These comments are not helpful and we can see that [Ukip's head of policy in Scotland] John Stanley has reacted very quickly which is good to see, by himself ordering Thackeray to go along to some of counselling sessions at the charity."
Thackeray's comments, which appeared in 2011 but have only just come to light, is the latest gaffe by members of Nigel Farage's right-wing party.
Last week Farage announced a purge of "barmy" members – only to be engulfed in fresh controversy when a councillor in England blamed UK floods on new gay marriage laws.
Thackeray did not respond to requests for comment from IBTimes UK.
Posted: 22 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Kevin Maguire | on: Wednesday, 22 January 2014, 00:23
Barmy UKIP is hell-bent on proving Prime Minister David Cameron right when he called the party “fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists”.
After a councillor blamed the recent widespread flooding on gay marriage and leader Nigel Farage insisted working women were “worth less” than men, UKIP members sound nuttier than ever.
So take our great UKIP fruitcake quiz and work out which statements came out of the mouths of ’kippers and which are made up...
- We accept no responsibility for any resemblance between the answers we made up and future UKIP policy and statements...
- Islamic Sharia law is the answer to crime because if you think you are going to get your hand chopped off for pinching something, you won’t pinch it.
- Hydraulically jacking up Britain is the best way of beating rising tides caused by global warming.
- Ladies can’t play chess, bridge or poker because they’re absolutely useless at competitive sports.
- Brussels sprouts are a European plot to colonise the great British dinner plate.
- Allowing the unemployed to vote on how other people’s money is spent, if they don’t contribute, is dangerous.
- Some homosexuals prefer sex with, you know, animals.
- One way of cutting the deficit could be compulsory abortions when the foetus is detected as having Downs, spina bifida or similar syndrome.
- Women deliberately wearing trousers is hostile behaviour to make them unattractive to men.
- Playing the national anthem in cinemas while movie lovers stgand to attention, would weed out illegal immigrants who are there to get away from the cold.
- The thesis on Islam and political correctness of gunman Anders Breivik, who killed 77 people in Norway, was accurate.
- Banning restaurants from listing chips cooked from potatoes grown in Lincolnshire as “French Fries” will turn back the invasion of foreign foods.
- People are starving in the world but Britain shouldn’t send aid to “Bongo Bongo land” where they spend our money on things like Ray-Ban sunglasses, apartments in Paris and Ferraris.
- Drinking five pints of fine English ale every lunchtime would save pubs from closure.
- Women don’t have the ambition to go right to the top because something gets in the way. And it’s called a baby.
- VAT should be dropped
on Union Jack souvenirs, including novelty underpants and knickers, so tourists take home a gift to remind the whole world that our nation is great.
- Whatever the facts say to the contrary, Muslims are breeding 10 times faster than Christians.
- Restoring village archery practice to revive the glorious spirit of Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt would be a bullseye of a policy, creating local jobs for local longbow manufacturers.
- Women who don’t clean behind the fridge are sluts.
- Shouting loudly in a dodgy accent at Spanish waiters is better than not trying to speak the language whenever a True Brit is on holiday.
- It’s outrageous you can’t go into a bank with a motorcycle helmet on or wear a balaclava on the train when Muslim women are allowed to wear burkas.
Yes... they really did say 12 out of those 20
- REAL Self-employed builder and Parlia- mentary candidate for Halesowen and Rowley Regis, Dean Perks, told supporters in Coventry “Sharia law works”. He’s also praised Enoch Powell as “visionary”.
- MADE UP
- REAL UKIP Treasurer Stuart Wheeler said business doesn’t need women: “Business is very, very competitive and you should take the performance of women at another competitive area, which is sport where they have no strength advantage. Chess, bridge, poker – women come absolutely nowhere, and I think that just has to be borne in mind.”
- MADE UP
- REAL Alexandra Swann, UKIP recruit from the Conservatives.
- REAL Now ex-Oxford branch chair Julia Gasper, who also branded gay rights a “lunatic’s charter”.
- REAL Now ex-council candidate Geoffrey Clarke. Learning disability charity Mencap has branded Clarke’s call for compulory abortion of unborn babies with Down’s or spina bifida as “abhorrent”. Clarke also said the Government should review the cost of medical treatment for people over the age of 80.
- REAL Greek tycoon and UKIP donor Demetri Marchessini, who’s given the party £10,000, says: “Women have big bottoms - they are meant to have big bottoms. Countless women who would look lovely in dresses or skirts are embarrassingly unattractive in trousers. Women know men don’t like trousers, yet they deliberately wear them.
- MADE UP
- REAL Now ex-Sheffield council candidate Steve Moxon.
- MADE UP
- REAL Now ex-UKIP MEP Godfrey Bloom.
- MADE UP
- REAL UKIP MEP Stuart Agnew, who also revealed during the same European parliament debate the less than shocking news: “I have never had a baby.”
- MADE UP
- REAL In an Islamophobic rant, former UKIP leader Lord Pearson of Rannoch went on to say: “I don’t know at what point they reach such a number we are no longer able to resist the rest of their demands.”
- MADE UP
- REAL Now ex-UKIP Yorkshire and Humber MEP Godfrey Bloom (again).
- MADE UP
- REAL Nigel Farage called for a ban on women wearing burkhas in public, also saying: “there is even talk of Sharia law becoming part of British culture.” Yes Nigel – it’s coming from your own party members.
Posted: 22 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: BBC | on: Monday, 20 January 2014, 21:08
Women prepared to sacrifice family life can do as well as male colleagues in financial firms, if not better, UKIP leader Nigel Farage has said.
Mr Farage, who worked in finance before politics, told an audience in the City that women make "different choices" to men for "biological reasons"
Those taking time off to have children were less valuable to employers on their return, he said.
But discrimination against women in the City was a thing of the past, he added.
Brokers are "as valuable as the client base that sticks with you and will move with you", he explained.
"In many, many cases, women make different choices in life to the ones that men make simply for biological reasons," he said.
"If a woman has a client base and has a child and takes two or three years off work, she is worth far less to the employer when she comes back than when she goes away because her client base cannot be stuck rigidly to her."
When he first started work in the City, it was a "deeply sexist" place, he added.
"I don't believe that in the big banks and brokerage houses and Lloyds of London and everyone else in the City, I do not believe there is any discrimination against women at all.
"I think that young, able women who are prepared to sacrifice the family life and stick with their careers do as well, if not better, than men."
Mr Farage elaborated on BBC Radio 4's The World at One: "People who bring in commission business are people who've worked very closely with clients, over years and years and years.
"If you have children and take nine months, or a year, or maybe more off, you tend to lose some of that business.
"I think the reality for women in the City is that if they have children, it has a very detrimental effect on their future pay prospects."
He was asked whether it should it be this way.
"I can't change biology," he replied.
Posted: 20 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 21:50
So this is all very revealing.
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has admitted that homophobic UKIP Councillor David Silvester wasn't suspended for his disgusting views towards gay people, rather he was suspended for making UKIP look foolish in the media.
Writing in his online Independent column Farage wrote " Ukip does not suspend people for holding religious views any more than we would call for religious texts to be banned and firmly believe that tolerance is a two-way street. But the party chairman has decided on this occasion to use the emergency powers available to him to suspend Mr Silvester. This is because of his behaviour, not his views, and is similar to the action we took over Godfrey Bloom when he decided that clunking Michael Crick around the head with a brochure was now permitted in the rules of engagement."
So Farage and UKIP don't actually object to blatant homophobia ?
But if you make Farage & UKIP look silly in public you are out so be warned.
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 5 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 18:53
As the immigration debate rumbles on, some sections of the media in the UK have become almost obsessed in their coverage of the subject, with immigration from the European Union becoming the main political hot potato.
One town that appears to receive more coverage than most is the Lincolnshire market town of Boston that has witnessed a significant rise in migration and in particular Eastern European migration into the town.
Journalists are frequent visitors to the town and like to discuss with the local residents the impact this migration has had on the people of Boston.
With tensions high, even the local media in the area are keen to find a voice that represents the local Bostonian populace and they believe they have found one, Dean Everitt.
Dean Everitt is the man behind the collection of anti-immigration demonstrations held in Boston, Spalding and Wisbech and has received favourable press coverage locally and nationally, portraying him as just an ordinary bloke frustrated by the lack of jobs and decline of services brought on by immigration into his town.
The various media outlets that speak to Everitt ask him whether he or his campaign is racist, which of course he immediately denies, with this assurance being accepted at face value. However, there appears to be a severe lack of research into the background of Everitt.
Hope not Hate spent some time researching Dean Everitt and found him to be every bit the hard-line racist he claimed he wasn't with links to both the BNP and UKIP.
In conjunction with his racism we discovered a rabid vein of homophobia topped off with levels of violent criminality and hatred for the police.
Everitt & The BNP
Everitt's home town of Boston first saw a BNP councillor elected onto its Borough Council in 2008 when David Owens was elected to represent the Fenside ward following a by-election in the town.
The racist politics of Owens and the BNP appealed to Dean Everitt and he began to appeal to his friends and family on his Facebook account, urging them to support the BNP declaring that the BNP is "The only party worth voting for, let's take out the trash and make England great again".
On General Election day in 2010, Everitt wrote "Today could be a life changer, Vote BNP" and "Have just voted first time ever, BNP all the way". But despite his enthusiastic support Everitt was to be ultimately disappointed as the BNP failed to make any impact on the town of Boston.
Over the following 18 months, Everitt posted large numbers of articles taken from the BNP website on his Facebook page and eventually in 2012 the local BNP organiser made an approach, wishing to speak to him.
Everitt & UKIP
Everitt tired of the BNP as their influence and votes began to dwindle in the area and in 2013 he switched his allegiances to the new kid in town, UKIP.
In March 2013, Everitt gave an interview to the local Fenland based community TV station and told them that UKIP was the only political party that could halt immigration, in particular the number of Bulgarians and Romanians supposedly coming into Britain, whom he claimed " Are coming here for benefits and a free life”
Everitt also claimed that he was working closely with UKIP as he believed that "Britain was at breaking point with the sheer volume of Eastern Europeans coming here taking homes and jobs. Not one home has been built or one job created yet one million have been let in"
As UKIP's influence grew in the Lincolnshire area, Everitt called on his friends and family to lend their support to Nigel Farage's xenophobic party. When Farage made a visit to the Boston area in April 2013, Everitt was one of the first to make the call to his supporters to turn out and support UKIP's leader.
A month later Everitt called on his followers to repeat their support of UKIP, this time at the ballot box and this time he wasn't to be disappointed as Lincolnshire County Council saw 16 UKIP councillors elected to become the official opposition in the chamber, much to the delight of Dean Everitt.
Dean Everitt wasted no time in linking his anti immigration campaign to UKIP, with Everitt becoming close to a number of the newly elected councillors, including Alan Jesson, Bob McAuley and Chris Pain, who at that time was UKIP's East Midlands regional chairman as well as being the leader of the UKIP opposition on Lincolnshire County Council.
Just a few months later, most of Everitt's newly found UKIP councillor friends including Chris Pain would find themselves thrown out of UKIP following a split within the local party. UKIP locally split in two, with Dean Everitt supporting the losing side.
Everitt & Homophobia
One of the more disturbing things that we discovered was Dean Everitt's hatred of the gay community. With Everitt frequently using the internet to post disgusting homophobic messages, with a number of those posts openly advocating the execution and murder of gays.
Everitt & Racism
The one thing that cannot be denied after studying Dean Everitt is that despite his protestations he is an abject racist who has a burning hatred for the Eastern Europeans who have settled in the area.
There is such a large amount of racism on his Facebook profile we have had to select just several of the more notable posts due to space limitations.
In 2009 he wrote "Christmas is coming and England's full of Polish crap, let's load them up on boats and planes and send the fuckers back"
November 2010 and Everitt wrote "Why are all the Polish in this country such aroogant ignorant bastards? Fuck off home ya wankers 88" The number 88 is sometimes used by some neo-Nazis as a substitute for "Heil Hitler" ("H" as the eighth letter of the alphabet).
Still in 2010 and Everitt proves he hates more than just the Eastern Europeans by posting " Send the fucking rag heads home".
2011 and Everitt's hatred carried on at full pace " I'm not a PC and smashing Polish peoples windows was my idea"
Later in the same year Dean Everitt posted a number of disgusting messages following the death of five Lithuanian men who were killed in an explosion at an illegal vodka distillery in Boston.
"Well today's off to a happy note with the news there's five foreigners less in the town boom boom lmfao"
"There's a new Lithuanian Vodka on sale in Boston called Ka Boom. It's guaranteed to blow yafuckin head off pmsl "
Everitt & Criminality
One of the issues Everitt constantly refers to is the increase in crime due to immigration. What he fails to point out to those "concerned" locals who have embraced his cause is that Everitt isn't adverse to breaking the law himself.
In November, Dean Everitt was found guilty of assault and was lucky to receive nothing more than a suspended sentence after he attacked one of his neighbours with a baseball bat following a minor row.
This isn't the first time Everitt has been before a judge. In 2010 Everitt was made to wear an electronic tag and was handed a court order after being found guilty of harassment.
Dean Everitt isn't the solution to Boston's problems, he is actually part of the problem.
This article was taken from the latest issue of Hope not Hate magazine, you can get your copy here
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 4 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 17:19
UKIP have called upon emergency procedures to suspend Councillor David Silvester following remarks made to the media over the weekend.
The South East UKIP Chairman Roger Bird has stated
"We cannot have any individual using the UKIP banner to promote their controversial personal beliefs which are not shared by the Party. Everyone is entitled to their own religious ideology which is central to a free and fair society.
Councillor Silvester's views are his own and in no way reflect the Party's position. Indeed Councillor Silvester himself has clearly stated this.
However, Councillor Silvester has today acted contrary to Party requests and continued to court the media in order to promote his own personal beliefs. This has caused significant offence to many people and goes against the core principles of UKIP.
It is not fair on the many thousands of hard working members of UKIP to have one person take attention away from their efforts and successes by promoting their own controversial views despite being requested not to do so."
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 17:13
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has confirmed that there are extremist elements within the ranks of his xenophobic party.
Speaking to the country's media Farage said that he promised to rid the party of its more extreme candidates ahead of the European and Local council elections in May and has promised to vet all 1,818 candidates to make sure they do not have "extremist, barmy or nasty" views.
Farage promised the crackdown following the huge amount of unwanted coverage UKIP received yesterday following the comments by Henley on Thames UKIP councillor David Silvester who declared that Gay marriage was to blame for the floods that devastated large areas of the UK.
Maybe Mr Farage should read Purple Rain ?
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 17:12
Disgraced UKIP councillor David Silvester has at last found an ally to support his twisted, homophobic poison, The Westboro Baptist Church.
The Kansas based Westboro Baptist Church is known for its extremist outpourings especially against gay people. The church is widely described as a hate group and is monitored as such by the Anti-Defamation League and Southern Poverty Law Center.
The church has been involved in actions against gay people since at least 1991 and is best known for it's anti gay protests at military funerals, however, the WBC also pickets celebrity funerals and public events that are likely to get it media attention.
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: . | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 13:26
A UKIP councillor has defended his stance of blaming recent storms and heavy floods across Britain on the legalisation of gay marriage.
David Silvester, from Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, had initially written to his local paper warning David Cameron the move would "result in disaster".
Reiterating his views on BBC Radio Oxford, he added: "God wants all gay men to repent and be healed."
Church groups called his views "primitive and dangerous".
Councillor Silvester defected from the Conservatives to UKIP in protest at David Cameron's support for same-sex unions.
In a letter to the Henley Standard, the town councillor drew a link between the passage of the government's same-sex marriage bill and recent flooding across the UK.
Speaking to BBC Radio Oxford's Charles Nove on Sunday, Mr Silvester said: "I'm serious, I believe what the Bible says about what is right and what is wrong for mankind.
"Secondly, I believe what the Bible says about divine repercussions on nations that insist on wrongdoing.
"God wants homosexuals to repent and be healed. I don't believe it's right to leave them as they are.
"That's not God's purpose."
The Rev Colin Coward, from Anglican group Changing Attitude, said he was not unfamiliar with Mr Silvester's mindset.
"I don't know where David worships, but clearly it's in a sect, a church which is not mainstream in its Christian practice and teaching."
Mr Coward added: "It's just prejudice that he is justifying on the grounds of his particular brand of Christianity."
Ian Bunce from the Baptist Union said: "It's a big jump from same-sex marriage to finding a cause of flooding.
"I'm not sure how Mr Silvester gets to that point in any context.
"It's a rather old-fashioned view and it's certainly not an opinion which holds any theological weight at all."
UKIP has said Mr Silvester's views are "not the party's belief" but defended his right to state his opinions.
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 6 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Paul Hutcheon | on: Sunday, 19 January 2014, 10:34
The acting chair of Ukip in Scotland has become embroiled in a bigotry row after it emerged he said Glasgow City Council was for "Gays, Catholics [and] Communists".
Misty Thackeray also said Catholicism was based on "fascist ideology" and complained of a "suffocating culture of anti-loyalism" in Scotland's largest city. He criticised attempts to curb a protest by the far-right Scottish Defence League.
SNP MEP Alyn Smith last night called on Thackeray to be removed.
Ukip, an anti-EU party, is in the throes of a civil war in Scotland. Key figures quit their posts recently while Scottish leader Lord Monckton was fired. That led to Thackeray, who works in the security industry in Glasgow, becoming acting chair.
But the Sunday Herald can reveal that Thackeray is under fire for a series of Facebook posts on religion.
He wrote in 2011: "Real Catholicism and Real Islamism are far from antagonists with both having an outwardly benign image but inwardly sharing a fascist ideology of extreme submissive conservatism and imperialism ..."
Later, he aimed a barb at Holyrood: "[T]here's more chance of winning the lottery two weeks running than getting an openly Rangers-supporting MSP into the chamber of the institutionally catholicised pretendy parliament .. lol."
He also criticised the local authority: "No wonder the blue half of my city say G.C.C actually stands for the Glasgow Celtic Council for Gays Catholics Communists eh.lol. NS!"
He wrote in 2011: "You have to witness a Glasgow election count night to understand the extent of islamist influence within the SNP and Labour … last time out I thought we were contesting a seat in Pakistan.lol."
Alyn Smith said: "These racist, bigoted and homophobic comments are totally unacceptable."
Thackeray said: "It is rather difficult to respond with any degree of accuracy to random comments allegedly made on a social network several years ago and now presented out of context by a newspaper with a clearly anti-Ukip editorial line. Such comments when taken in context would be considered merely routine social commentary by any experienced observer of Scottish political and cultural life."
He added that freedom of expression was a human right, saying he believed "very strongly in upholding these hard-won freedoms", and claimed "many in today's society have become accustomed to sugar-coated language", but stated that "it goes without saying it is never my intention to cause needless offence".
Posted: 19 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Asa Bennett | on: Saturday, 18 January 2014, 16:11
Ukip has been forced to distance itself from controversial remarks made by its own party members over attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Writing on Ukip's official message board, Stephen Wilders, chairman of Ukip's local branch in Dartford, mockingly described the condition as "mostly psychobabble to keep lefties in jobs".
Ukip activist Stephen Harding, from Gillingham, also dismissed the behavioural disorder as "a load of psychobabble".
"All I hear about now are disorders that mean children need special care. The only special care I and all my peers received was a telling off from the teacher followed by another telling off from my parents."
"There are a few genuine cases of course, but from what I hear now, if you do not have a disorder, you have a disorder!"
Charities have warned the remarks only serve to "add to the stigma" for young people ADHD.
Kathleen Garner, secretary of Ukip's Croydon branch, suggested on the message boards that young children suffering from ADHD were merely "naughty", and blamed any signs of ADHD or dyslexia on parents not feeding them properly or poor teaching.
She wrote: "We had the odd 'naughty' child in class, but that was usually just the one and it was clear their parents neglected them. The same goes for dyslexia."
"Despite having a son diagonised with the condition, I consider it to be solely the result of poor teaching in primary school."
The Ukip activists' remarks were condemned by mental health charities and politicians.
Chris Leaman, Policy Manager at YoungMinds, told the Huffington Post UK: “For the 132,000 children and young people with severe ADHD and their families these misguided comments are unhelpful, unwelcome and unwanted.
"Children growing up with ADHD already grow up in a society where stigma often prevents them from getting the help and support they need. Sadly, these comments will just add to the stigma that these children face everyday.
“I hope that those making the comments take time to study the medical evidence and draw proper conclusions rather than basing their opinions on ill-informed and un-evidenced judgments.”
Mary Honeyball, Labour MEP for London, said that the remarks were "painfully out of step with the values of modern Britain."
She told HuffPostUK: "The comments made by Ukip members about a host of physical and mental health issues are alarming to say the least. They show how painfully out of step grass roots Ukip opinion is with the values of modern Britain. Moreover they reveal the extent to which the party is founded on knee-jerk responses to events rather than evidence-based approaches. We are seeing, for the umpteenth time, that Ukip is the voice of unchecked right-wing hearsay."
A Ukip party spokesman said: "Ukip take mental health very seriously and know that there are exceptionally long waiting lists for therapy for those suffering with debilitating conditions. We don't believe the solution is just prescribing tablets to everyone.
"ADHD isn't something which just affects children but adults too and we distance ourselves from these comments utterly."
This is not the first time that Ukip activists' views have caused controversy, after some called on the party to accept people from the British National Party, and others mocked the death of Nelson Mandela and tried to defend the apartheid regime.
Posted: 18 Jan 2014 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Charlotte Meredith | on: Saturday, 18 January 2014, 14:07
The UKIP Councillor for Henley on Thames has written a very odd homophobic letter to a local newspaper.
David Silvester, who resigned from the Tories over David Cameron’s same-sex marriage policy, has said gay marriage is to blame for Britain's recent spell of bad weather in a letter to The Henley Standard,
"Since the passage of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act, the nation has been beset by serious storms and floods," he claims.
Ukip have reacted to the councillor's comments by telling HuffPost: "If the media are expecting UKIP to either condemn or condone someone's personal religious views they will get absolutely no response."
Ominously discussing the flooding in his letter to the newspaper Mr Silvester ponders: "Is this just global warming or is there something more serious at work?"
Expanding on this rather doom-laden suggestion, he launches into an eyebrow-raising tirade, quoting The Bible, and explaining that acts like gay marriage are to blame for storms, disease, pestilence and war.
"The scriptures make it abundantly clear that a Christian nation that abandons its faith and acts contrary to the Gospel (and in naked breach of a coronation oath) will be beset by natural disasters."
He does say he warned the Prime Minister about the gays and their apparent secret agenda to destroy humanity, adding "I wrote to David Cameron in April 2012 to warn him that disasters would accompany the passage of his same sex marriage Bill.
"But he went ahead despite a 600,000-signature petition by concerned Christians and more than half of his own parliamentary party saying that he should not do so.
"Now, even as Cameron sheds crocodile tears on behalf of destitute flooded homeowners, playing at advocate against the very local councils he has made cash-strapped, it is his fault that large swathes of the nation have been afflicted by storms and floods.
"He has arrogantly acted against the Gospel that once made Britain 'great' and the lesson surely to be learned is that no man or men, however powerful, can mess with Almighty God with impunity and get away with it for everything a nation does is weighed on the scaled of divine approval or disapproval."
Unfortunately for the councillor, more bad weather is predicted – so it seems gay marriage is going nowhere fast.
A Ukip spokeswoman told the Huffington Post UK that "freedom to individual thought and expression is a central tenet of any open minded and democratic country.
"It is quite evident that this is not the Party's belief but the councillor's own and he is more than entitled to express independent thought despite whether or not other people may deem it standard or correct.
"That is what makes the United Kingdom such a wonderful, proud, diverse and free country."
But the Conservative District Councillor for Henley on Thames told HuffPost Mr Silvester's comments highlighted how Ukip would take the UK back to the stone age if elected.
"Playing 'spot the wrath' with pages of the Henley Standard is absurd," William Hall said.
"Many people around here appreciate a sound stance on cutting taxes and getting out of the EU but once you scratch the surface UKIP is a party that would take us back to the stone age."
The Henley Standard have been contacted for comment.
Posted: 18 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Monday, 13 January 2014, 21:47
Bert Leech (far left) helping the England First Party
As we continue to monitor extremism in this country, year after year one name continues to crop up in far right circles.That name is question belongs to Bert Leech.
Albert Edward Leech is an elderly Bedford based businessman who has attempted to act as a political "sugar daddy" to a collection of far right organisations over a number of years.
In March 2004, Leech donated £1,000 to the British National Party, the record of this donation can be viewed on the Electoral Commission website.
In 2007 Leech offered to fund deposits for "Nationalist" candidates who were intending to stand in the 2010 General Election. Leech along with two other unknown benefactors were to make available a war chest of up to £40,000. The offer was supposedly available to members of the following parties: BNP, British Peoples Party, The English Democrats, English Independence Party, Freedom Party, NF, England First Party and even UKIP. What is unclear however is whether the offer was a genuine one or if indeed any candidate chose to make an approach to Leech and his group.
Later in 2007 it is known that Leech attended the 40th anniversary meeting of the National Front held in a venue in West London. Staying in 2007 Leech was also photographed with a number of England First Party activists who were fighting a by election in Milton Keynes.
The following year saw Bert Leech attend the "Voice of Change" meeting held in Brinsley, Nottinghamshire, organised by Sadie Graham and her group of BNP rebels who attempted and failed to wrestle power away from Nick Griffin. Leech is thought to have donated £5,000 to their campaign.
Fast forward to 2013 and Bert Leech attended the launch meeting of Andrew Brons' BNP splinter The British Democratic Party in the Leicestershire village of Queniborough.
In tandem with his support for the various dregs of the far right, Leech along with his close friend, former BNP activist Barry Taylor established a hate filled website entitled " England Is Ours" which remains online still to this day despite its large amounts of racism and anti-Semitic postings.
So with a comprehensive CV of far right extremism, we were surprised to find that Bert Leech had become a UKIP committee member.
In November 2012, following an AGM that took place at Wymington Memorial Hall Leech was voted onto the branch committee of Mid Bedfordshire UKIP.
We wonder if Leech has once again dipped his hands into his very deep pockets, this time with UKIP?
This article was taken from the latest issue of Hope not Hate magazine, subscribe here to recieve your copy
Posted: 13 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: ITV | on: Monday, 13 January 2014, 16:57
Richard Elvin, the regional chairman of the UK Independence Party says a branch secretary may be stripped of her party membership after she made derogatory remarks about the murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence.
Pamela Preedy is secretary of UKIP's Redcar and Cleveland branch. Last year on an online UKIP forum she said: "the image of Stephen Lawrence has been promoted to sainthood " She also accused David Cameron of "worshipping at the shrine of Saint Stephen".
Mr Elvin told ITV Ms Preedy's views absolutely contradict UKIP's policies, he condemns them and has apologised to the Lawrence family.
Posted: 13 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Ben Glaze | on: Sunday, 12 January 2014, 11:32
UKIP leader Nigel Farage and his Euro MPs claimed nearly £800,000 in expenses and allowances from the EU in one year while campaigning for Britain to leave.
The party’s grasping MEPs billed taxpayers £370,000 for office costs and got nearly £420,000 subsistence allowances for meals and hotels.
And they boosted UKIP coffers with more than £400,000 donations of their own money ahead of May’s Euro elections.
MEP and deputy party leader Paul Nuttall employed 12 members of staff at public expense. Mr Farage and East Midlands MEP Roger Helmer even put their wives on the Brussels payroll. The UKIP leader's German wife Kirsten earned up to £30,000 while Sara Helmer pocketed up to £20,000.
A source said: “Farage makes a big thing of pretending UKIP are different from other parties. But this shows they’re even worse.”
Papers seen by the Sunday Mirror show UKIP MEPs claimed an average of £35,635 each in “general expenditure allowances” in 2012.
Officials say the cash should cover “office management costs”.
The allowances came on top of their £79,000 salaries, first class travel expenses and “daily subsistence allowance”.
UKIP MEPs claimed the daily allowance for an average of 86 days each, in accordance with EU rules. Labour MEPs claimed around 128 days each, suggesting they were in Parliament more often.
Mr Nuttall, North West MEP, claimed the daily subsistence allowance just 30 times in 2012 and has donated £12,400 to UKIP since election in 2009, according to the Electoral Commission. His allowances claims last year ran to £40,436. He was among seven MEPs who gave UKIP a total of £425,978 in cash and other benefits after election.
The others are: Derek Clark, East Midlands, £56,822 general and subsistence allowances, £187,000 party donations since 2004; Stuart Agnew, East of England, £78,486 allowances, £31,000 donations since 2009; Mike Nattrass, West Midlands, £59,845 allowances, £96,000 donations since 2004, resigned in September; Godfrey Bloom, Yorkshire and Humber, £46,722 allowances, £72,000 donations since 2004. He quit the UKIP Euro MPs group after saying British aid went to “bongo bongo land”.
MEPs who made no donations but claimed allowances include: Gerard Batten, London, £51,977; John Bufton, Wales, £49,550; William Legge, South West, £53,813 and Roger Helmer, East Midlands, £67,410.
Mr Farage’s allowances of £61,065 only includes subsistence for the last six months. In 2009, he said his MEPs would “provide a quarterly expenses statement”. We found they have not published any for more than a year. Campaign group European Movement UK said: “UKIP’s position is hypocritical.”
UKIP said: “Our MEPs claim allowances like other MEPs. Mr Farage employs his wife because his office is in his home for which he doesn’t charge the taxpayer.”
Posted: 12 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Glen Owen | on: Sunday, 12 January 2014, 11:14
Nigel Farage was last night at the centre of a new racism storm over shocking remarks made by UKIP officials about Nelson Mandela and the murdered black teenager Stephen Lawrence.
One mocked Mr Lawrence as ‘Saint Stephen’ and said his grieving mother was ‘boring us all to tears’.
Another, writing just days after Mandela’s death, said that some ‘base-born’ people were ‘intended by nature’ to be ‘slaves’.
Opponents said that the remarks – made on an internal party forum used by senior figures, including party leader Mr Farage – revealed the ‘true face’ of the party.
Some of the most shocking messages concerned Mr Lawrence, who was killed in a racist attack in South London in 1993.
Pamela Preedy, secretary of UKIP’s Redcar branch, wrote: ‘The image of Stephen Lawrence has been promoted to sainthood, with his own memorial site, constant invocation of his name in any discussion of racism; even to close down a discussion about immigration when the issue bore no relevance to his murder’.
Ms Preedy added in the message, left last year: ‘I’m sure his mother still grieves for him, but it’s time she did it privately without setting him up as some kind of media icon. She risks . . . boring us all to tears.’
Another contributor to the forum, Keith Woods, a UKIP council election candidate, commented as part of the same exchange: ‘As for St Stephen of Racism, I feel sorry for the parents of many white youths that have been murdered . . . no one seems to give a toss . . . your son gets murdered, you become an expert on race relations it seems . . . but only if you are a particular colour’.
The death of former South African President Nelson Mandela last month prompted some UKIP members to discuss whether it was ‘time for a reappraisal’ of the reviled apartheid system.
David William Griffiths, a member of UKIP’s West London branch, used the site to argue that some people were ‘intended by nature’ to be slaves and were ‘marked out for subjection’ from birth.
He went on to quote selectively from Hindu literature to argue that a ‘base-born man’ can ‘never conceal his real nature’.
He concluded with the offensive line: ‘That kingdom in which such b*******, sullying [the purity of] the castes, are born, perishes quickly together with its inhabitants.’
The word b******* has been removed from the quote, on the grounds that it was ‘offensive language’ which had been ‘auto-deleted’.
Other postings appear to confirm the claims of UKIP’s opponents that many of its activists back the policies of openly racist far-Right groups such as the British National Party (BNP) and the English Defence League (EDL).
One councillor, who uses the online name Icini123, boasted: ‘Some individuals who voted for BNP in desperation, because there was no other alternate where we didn’t stand, have come over to us now.’
Martin Caine, a UKIP committee member in Poole & Mid Dorset, wrote: ‘I actually agree with the EDL on what they protest about.’
And Alexander Monk, a UKIP member from Lowestoft, said: ‘What really grinds my gears about it is people are declaring the EDL as “extremist” which is tosh in my eyes.’
And in a message earlier this month, Brian Otridge, who is a campaign manager for UKIP’s North West Hampshire Branch, declared UKIP should be directly targeting BNP voters in the wake of their leader, Nick Griffin, being declared bankrupt.
Last night, veteran anti-apartheid campaigner Peter Hain said: ‘This is the true face of UKIP. Under their thin veil of respectability lurks rampant bigotry and prejudice, fed by disenchantment and feelings of social injustice.
‘None of these comments surprise me, because whenever I speak out about apartheid I am bombarded with bigoted and quasi-racist tweets from UKIP supporters.’
Last month this newspaper revealed that Victoria Ayling, an ally of Mr Farage, had been captured on video saying of immigrants: ‘I just want to send the lot back.’
Mr Farage vowed yesterday to start a new targeted campaign for the 2015 General Election to ‘pick off’ vulnerable seats, including several held by Labour.
He declared: ‘This party feels itself to be a new force in British politics. The goal is to get enough representation in Westminster to make the difference.’
Last night, commenting on the forum posts, a UKIP spokesman said: ‘UKIP does not endorse any of the comments made on this forum which go against the party’s principles and core values.
‘However, the party does not police open discussions. Where elected representatives or party figures make comments bringing the party into disrepute, we act accordingly.’
Posted: 12 Jan 2014 | There are 4 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Paul Hutcheon | on: Sunday, 12 January 2014, 11:00
One of Ukip Scotland's most senior officials has become the latest figure to quit his post amid the deepening crisis in Nigel Farage's party north of the Border.
Peter Adams has resigned as Ukip's regional organiser citing a "breakdown" in his "working relationship" with the party chairman.
The SNP described Ukip as a "farce" and said the party would continue to be "rejected" by voters.
The anti-EU party, led by Farage at a UK level, has been tipped to win May's European Parliament election. Party members are hopeful that they can return an MEP north of the Border. But divisions inside the Scottish party are threatening to undermine its prospects.
Last year, the then Ukip Scotland leader Lord Monckton and his allies believed three members based in Edinburgh were planning a takeover of the party.
The row spilled over into the internal election to rank candidates for the European poll, with six of the nine shortlisted - including Monckton - quitting in protest.
Mike Scott-Hayward and Malcolm Macaskill then quit as Scottish chair and chief fundraiser respectively, while Farage sacked Monckton from his leadership post.
Monckton blasted Farage and claimed the Scottish party had been "wiped out".
Adams, who was tasked with making Ukip an election-winning force, has now also walked away.
In an email to members, he pointed the finger at UK party chair Steve Crowther: "Contrary to some rumours being spread around I have no health problems and am not leaving Ukip, and to dispel other rumours, the main reason for me standing down is due to the breakdown in the working relationship between myself and the party chairman.
"It is disappointing that the egos of three of our Edinburgh members has lead [sic] to so much disruption over the past nine months and spoiled our build up to the European elections. Remember the old adage 'As you sow, so shall you reap'."
Adams is a party stalwart who polled 0.4% in the Livingston by-election in 2005, 1.7% in the Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency at the last General Election, and 3.75% at last year's Holyrood by-election in Dunfermline.
David Coburn is the party's "lead candidate" in Scotland for the European election. Right-winger Misty Thackeray is interim Scottish chair.
An SNP spokesperson said: "Ukip are a total farce and barely exist as a party in Scotland."
Adams said: "I stood down as regional organiser at the end of December."
A Ukip spokesman said: "Peter was a well-liked and hardworking member of Ukip. We want to thank him for his years of service and wish him all the best in the future."
Posted: 12 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Wednesday, 8 January 2014, 12:58
I have just read about the sad death of Paul Goggins, MP for Wythenshawe and Sale East, Greater Manchester.
The former Northern Ireland and Home Office minister who was aged just 60 collapsed just over a week ago whilst out jogging with his son.
So imagine my disgust when I discovered a leading UKIP candidate and activist had wasted no time in cracking sick, opportunistic jokes at the expense of Mr Coggins.
Glen Wilson, from Stourbridge, West Midlands posted a news article on the death of Mr Coggins on a pro UKIP Facebook page "The UKIP Debating Society" and included the message "On Your Marks" a disgusting call to his UKIP comrades to prepare for the inevitable by-election that will follow the passing of Mr Coggins.
Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP should take immediate action against Glen Wilson and remove him from the party.
Glen Wilson (2nd From Left) with UKIP Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall MEP
Posted: 8 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Mike Blackburn | on: Tuesday, 7 January 2014, 15:55
A Stockton councillor is to be investigated over allegations he breached the members’ code of conduct over a controversial planning application.
Mark Chatburn, UKIP councillor for Yarm and Kirklevington, said he was “fuming” after being told by email on Christmas Eve that he is accused of breaching the code by publishing privileged legal advice on his internet blog.
As reported, the legal brief was circulated to all members of Stockton’s planning committee before a meeting in November to consider an application for 159 new homes at Urlay Nook in Eaglescliffe.
The barrister’s brief advised that approval of the scheme “would probably result in a withdrawal” of an appeal launched by developers Taylor Wimpey after their first application was thrown out in June.
Stockton Council defended the circular saying it was “entirely appropriate for professional legal opinion to be shared with members of planning committee”.
But Councillor Chatburn, Teesside’s only UKIP councillor, branded the brief an attempt by council officers to “manipulate” the committee.
The move was also criticised by Conservative Stockton South MP James Wharton who accused officers of trying to “bully” committee members.
The Urlay Nook plans were approved at the second time of asking.
Reacting to the news that an investigation was to be launched, Councillor Chatburn said: “To sit on the issue for nearly seven weeks after I published the information before emailing me on Christmas Eve demonstrates how utterly childish some officers at Stockton Council are.
“It is no surprise at all they would be angry that their attempts to secure the outcome they wanted at the planning committee were exposed, but in dealing with this matter as they have proves them to be no better than a playground bully.
“They would do well to remember that they are employed to serve residents.”
Councillor Chatburn received the legal brief the day before he was removed from the planning committee after he switched political allegiances from Conservative to UKIP.
He has indicated he will defend the charge against him, arguing that release of the information was in the public interest.
A Stockton Council spokesperson said: “An alleged breach of the council’s code of conduct for local authority members is being investigated and will ultimately be reported to a Member Panel.
“Currently no specific timescales have been agreed for this process.”
Stockton Council was unable to say what sanctions Mr Chatburn may face as a result of the investigation.
Posted: 7 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Monday, 6 January 2014, 20:49
Last week we saw a plethora of headlines regarding the newly elected Keighley UKIP councillor Sam Fletcher.
Fletcher posted a string of Facebook comments, going into detail about his troubled sex life before posting Aids jokes and disgusting homophobic comments.
A UKIP spokesman told the media that UKIP HQ was concerned and was investigating the postings made by the councillor and prospective Bradford council election candidate.
It seems it isn't only UKIP HQ who were "concerned" about Fletcher's homophobic tirade, the UKIP LGBT group aren't all that impressed either.
Posted: 6 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Monday, 6 January 2014, 17:21
UKIP have just announced the appointment of a new Director of Communications, the Daily Express journalist Patrick O'Flynn.
O'Flynn is currently the Chief Political Commentator for The Daily Express and will leave the newspaper next month to take up the position with the xenophobic party, with a run up to UKIP’s campaign for the 2014 European and UK local elections.
The journalist is also standing for UKIP in the European elections as the lead MEP candidate in the East of England constituency and was controversially selected above sitting MEP Stuart Agnew.
Party Chairman Steve Crowther claimed that O'Flynn was " already a deeply valued part of the UKIP team"
Deeply Valued ?
If that is the case O' Flynn's appointment shows the true direction that UKIP is heading in.
The Express journalist regularly uses his newspaper column to spew his particular brand of Islamophobia.
Here are just a few quotes from UKIP's new Director of Communications.
July 4, 2007
" Before long I can see the old East End becoming an almost exclusively Muslim district in which others fear to tread"
Tue, November 13, 2007
" It was British Muslims who committed mass murder on July 7, 2005."
" How about the systematic electoral fraud that disfigures democracy in many of Britain’s new Asian ghettos? "
Tue, December 4, 2007
" Increasingly people are concluding that Britain and Islam have fundamentally incompatible cultures and never the twain shall meet."
Tue, January 8, 2008
" If we allow the uncontrolled expansion of non-integrated British Islam the character of our nation will be destroyed forever. To inflict the Muslim call to prayer on everyone with a Mosque in their area will have but one result - more so-called "white flight" out of urban areas and the creation of more Islamic ghettos."
" To ordinary British ears the wail of the Mosque is not just an unwelcome racket, but an alien and threatening sound"
February 12, 2008:
" Why should we trust Britain's Muslims? "
" The vast majority of us seem not to feel like that about British Muslims. We feel that this is a troublesome minority with a record of disrupting our national life and ostentatiously refusing to fit in with the overall culture."
" Muslims may feel they are being singled out for harsh treatment, but in fact the British public is being perfectly fair and sensible in a post-September 11 world."
" The leaders of British Islam still don’t appreciate the degree to which their behaviour is despised by the majority of the public."
" Consider which of these statements best reflects your own view:
a) Britain would be a better country if there were more Muslims living here.
b) There is the right number of Muslims in Britain to serve the country’s interests.
c) It would be preferable if Britain did not have a large Muslim population at all.
Got an answer yet? I bet it wasn’t A."
" On an economic level, the impact of Britain’s Muslims is massively negative. Research shows Muslim communities are typified by heavy levels of welfare dependency and low levels of wealth creation."
" On a wider cultural basis, the impact of Islam on this country is also strongly negative in the eyes of the public."
"Muslim urban ghettos have also reintroduced electoral fraud as a regular feature of British political life."
Posted: 6 Jan 2014 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Nigel Morris | on: Sunday, 5 January 2014, 19:06
Nigel Farage, the leader of the UK Independence Party, provoked anger after expressing agreement with the “basic principle” of some of the sentiments in Enoch Powell’s notorious “rivers of blood” speech.
Without being told who had delivered the comments, Mr Farage was read a section in which Powell claimed indigenous Britons risked becoming “strangers in their own country” with “neighbourhoods changed beyond recognition”.
Mr Farage responded: “In a lot of England, that’s true”.
He refused to back down when he was told the remarks were made in Powell’s 1968 speech.
“What he was warning about is that if you have a large influx of people into an area that changes an area beyond recognition, there is tension. That basic principle is right,” the Ukip leader told Sky News.
He dismissed the suggestion that Powell had “seen it coming”, but he added that migration was on a “completely different scale” today than when the speech was delivered nearly 50 years ago.
“When immigration was being discussed in the ‘60s and ‘70s and ‘80s, we were talking about an annual net inflow to the country of between 30 and 50,000 people.
“What we have had in the last 13 years is net 4m extra migrants who have come to Britain so we are dealing with something now on a scale that hitherto we couldn’t even have conceived,” he said.
The speech, in which Powell professed to “see the River Tiber flowing with much blood” because of the extent of non-white immigration, led to his sacking from the Tory front bench.
It has haunted the politics of race ever since and only last month Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, evoked its memory to accuse his Conservative Coalition partners of “panic” over Romanian and Bulgarian migration.
Mr Farage has previously described Powell as his political hero because of his commitment to rolling back the influence of the state. He said in 2008: “I would never say that Powell was racist in any way at all. Had we listened to him, we would have much better race relations now than we have got.”
Sunder Katwala, the director of the British Future think tank, said: “If Ukip wants be mainstream and not consigned to the margins, it has to get away from the politics of ‘Enoch was right’. It needs to get into the debate of how a diverse society deals with immigration and integration.”
In his interview, Mr Farage accused David Cameron of not doing enough to curb immigration and suggested only people earning wages on a par with the average national income should be allowed into Britain.
He said: “We should be selective. The single most important criteria should be that we want people coming to this country who have got a skill to bring, who economically are going to earn more than £27,500.”
Despite last year predicting a “Romanian crime wave”, the Ukip leader denied trying to scapegoat Romanians and Bulgarians following the lifting last week of all controls on their right to work in Britain.
“We are scapegoating almost the entire political class in Westminster, who have allowed open borders since 2004,” Mr Farage said.
“We should transform the labour market in this country. The problem we've got is, we have got a massive oversupply of unskilled labour.”
Mr Cameron said he wanted to prevent migrants living in this country from claiming child benefit for youngsters they had left behind.
“I don’t think that is right and that is something I want to change. It’s a situation that I inherited. I think you can change it,” he said.
The Prime Minister also signalled that tougher migration rules would be a key Conservative objective in future attempts to renegotiate Britain’s relationship with the European Union.
Posted: 5 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Chris Tate | on: Saturday, 4 January 2014, 12:29
Keighley’s newly-elected UKIP town councillor is in the eye of a political storm caused by late-night messages on his Facebook page in which he implies enjoying an adulterous affair with a married mother in the town.
Samuel Fletcher only won his seat last month, but yesterday he became the focus of attention after details of his apparent revelations were made public on the internet.
And now the claims about his online behaviour are being investigated by UKIP itself, which is “concerned by what it has seen”.
Coun Fletcher, 22, made a late-night Facebook posting on New Year’s Day which were then copied and placed on a blogsite run by a Conservative student.
And among many messages, it is claimed that bachelor Mr Fletcher revealed he had extra-marital sex with a woman he described as “a good salt of the earth Keighley lass”.
Speaking yesterday, Coun Fletcher, who represents the Bracken Bank and Ingrow ward, acknowledged he had posted the comments – but denied they were true.
“The comments about the woman being married were untrue and I made that part up to protect the identity of the woman I was talking about,” he said. “The woman involved was not married.”
Coun Fletcher said he had posted the comments two nights ago during conversations with assorted people.
“Some of those I talk with are friends and other are just people who come on to talk and might actually be on “fishing trips,” he said.
Coun Fletcher also referred to UKIP’s Nigel Farage as “leader of UKIP in name only” and says the party makes decisions collectively.
However, when asked to explain the comment, he said: “That is how Nigel has described himself on many occasions and that is how the party is run.”A UKIP spokesman told the Telegraph & Argus last night: “The party is concerned by what it has seen and is currently investigating.”
Coun Fletcher is also UKIP’s prospective candidate to contest the Keighley Central ward in the elections for Bradford Council in May.
Posted: 4 Jan 2014 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Ned Donovan | on: Friday, 3 January 2014, 17:29
In a string of bizarre Facebook comments, newly-elected UKIP councillor Samuel Fletcher went into detail about his troubled sex life before posting Aids jokes and homophobic comments.
Samuel Fletcher, a 22-year-old newly-elected UKIP Councillor from Yorkshire, reminded the country why you need to be careful what you post on Facebook.
Yesterday Councillor Fletcher posted numerous comments in a public Facebook thread spanning more than 1,000 posts, mostly due to a growing backlash over his offensive comments:
The thread began to wind down until Councillor Fletcher made crude jokes, including one about homosexuals and the Aids virus. One of the final comments The Kernel observed involved Mr Fletcher asking a lady how she would react if backbench Tory MP Priti Patel’s head was between his legs.
Posted: 3 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Alex Andreou | on: Thursday, 2 January 2014, 11:32
On Wednesday, Luton airport became a political hadron collider, where the rhetoric of fear of the past few months over immigration crashed into the charged particle beam of hard reality. The aftermath revealed commons home affairs committee chairman Keith Vaz and Conservative MP Mark Reckless outside the arrivals gate, like hapless limousine drivers waiting in the wrong terminal, holding up a card which read "Mr Something-escu".
They found someone eventually. It turns out that Victor Spirescu was not here to claim benefits, beg, steal, have an expensive heart operation, six children, get a council flat and assassinate the Queen. He was just here to wash cars, pay tax and, eventually, go back home with his savings to repair his house.
This was no fluke either. Transport data shows that no extra flights or coaches were scheduled from Romania or Bulgaria, advance air bookings are down for the first three months of the year compared with 2013, and there were plenty of seats available at prices as low as £135.
"The Holiday Invasion That Never Happened" sounds like a Doctor Who special. But then again, it always was fiction. The fiction that one can have a pick 'n' mix arrangement with other countries, with no repercussions for international trade or millions of Brits living outside the UK. The fiction that a country can be a more effective player on the global stage by becoming insular and xenophobic. The insidious fiction that what stood between us and prosperity was a hypothetical Bulgarian.
No doubt it will be claimed that measures, taken at the eleventh hour to deter immigration, worked; despite reason dictating that most people plan such a life-altering move more than a month in advance, which was when the government started trying to out-Ukip Ukip. No doubt those tabloids that love to bash migrants will uncover one who came here to claim benefits and make them front page news. No doubt Nigel Farage will latch onto some spurious statistic, that 60% of all robberies, in a rural Post Office, between 65 and 72 sq ft, on a sunny day, were perpetrated by someone whose name ends in -ov, then tout it across the BBC programmes that obligingly provide a soapbox for his nonsense.
The fact remains that this morning, Brits woke up to find there was not a Bulgarian family squatting in their front garden; that their job had not been stolen by some crafty Romanian who spoke no English; that they had been completely, unnecessarily, cynically manipulated into panic. Let's hope they wake up to the understanding that immigration is a convenient distraction, which they can choose not to allow to cloud their vision.
To the few who did arrive, and continue to trickle in, to Mr Spirescu, I say "welcome". The risk migrants choose to take in uprooting their entire lives, the gumption they show in starting over, the ingenuity required in negotiating a completely unknown and hostile environment, the pure desire to be here, is precisely what this country needs more of.
Posted: 2 Jan 2014 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments