HOPE not hate

Political

You are viewing blog items for July 2013.

Share on FacebookTweet this
Mixed messages over UKIPís senior roles in Lincolnshire

posted by: Andrew Hirst | on: Wednesday, 31 July 2013, 13:43


Coun Robin Hunter-Clarke, pictured left, with UKIP leader Nigel Farage, and Dean Hunter-Clarke, at a party meeting earlier this year

Coun Robin Hunter-Clarke, pictured left, with UKIP leader Nigel Farage, and Dean Hunter-Clarke, at a party meeting earlier this year

A political party’s reshuffling of its senior roles has sparked confusion, uncertainty and mixed messages from those involved.

An anonymous letter has claimed that UKIP’s two deputy leaders, councillors Robin Hunter-Clarke and Victoria Ayling had been replaced by Coun Colin Mair.

The letter, allegedly quoting the party leader Coun Chris Pain, says the two councillors’ low attendance and lack of commitment had a ‘negative impact’ on the party.

“The feeling from all of the members present was that both Robin and Victoria had not contributed to the group or helped Chris pain the group leader at all, despite promising to do this,” the letter stated.

Coun Pain has since confirmed that Coun Colin Mair has taken the post of deputy leader in place of the two councillors, though he has denied making any other comments, as reported by the other media.

“I have confirmed that Colin Mair was deputy leader, he will be a good deputy leader and will push the group forward,” he said.

“But I made no further comments about Robin or Victoria - there’s no issue with either of those councillors.”

Adding to the confusion, Coun Hunter-Clarke, the ward holder for Skegness South has since insisted that both he and Coun Ayling remain as deputy leaders.

“Can’t comment at minute as investigation ongoing but I can say I have not been removed as Deputy Leader and neither has Victoria,” he said

Coun Hunter-Clarke also dismissed rumours that they had joined the Conservative party as ‘complete and utter rubbish’.

A UKIP spokesperson said: “We do not comment on anonymous letters’.

Coun Ayling, Spilsby Fen’s ward-holder, has yet to respond to a request for comment.

Skegness Standard

 Posted: 31 Jul 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP Candidate Embraces Sharia Law

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Tuesday, 30 July 2013, 20:41


Dean Perks

Dean Perks

A UKIP parliamentary candidate has announced that he embraces aspects of Sharia law, saying he fully agrees with it.

Dean Perks, UKIP's proposed parliamentary candidate for Halesowen and Rowley Regis in the West Midlands told a Coventry UKIP branch meeting that he agreed with part but not all of Sharia Law.

The self employed builder from Dudley explained how he fully supported the cutting off of limbs if a person was found guilty of a crime such as theft. Perks was attempting to spell out the dangers of potential UKIP candidates speaking out of line on social media. However the meeting, held in May of this year was filmed and posted to Youtube, a form of social media

Perks said:

I also recently had a conversation with someone where they were asking me what I thought of Sharia Law.

I said well in all honesty I do agree with part but by no means all of Sharia law and that was the exact phrase that I used.

That was February. That was retweeted back to me last week.

Somebody kept that to use that against me and he actually said that my political career was finished before it had even started because of that phrase. Now I'm sorry but I was that sort of not ashamed of it that I actually retweeted it myself. Because that's my view, that's my opinion.

Sharia law in my opinion it works as a prevention and prevention is better than cure. If you think you are going to get your hand chopped off for pinching something you won't pinch it.

Now, it's quite straight forward, prevention is better than cure and that's the part of Sharia law I agree with. I aint going to defend myself for it I do agree with it."

Dean Perks is no stranger to controversy. In February a local newspaper revealed that he had branded someone as “retarded” on Twitter.

He also lauded racist politician Enoch Powell as “a visionary”.

Perks was involved in an exchange which resulted in him writing about a fellow Twitter user: “I just asked the question but he will not answer, I think he may be retarded.”

This followed an ugly argument with Dudley Labour councillor Dave Branwood who asked Perks whether he thought Enoch Powell was racist.

Mr Perks replied: “No. It's a fact he was very well liked amongst the Asian community. I'd say he was a visionary.”

The full video of Perks' Coventry speech can be viewed here.

Should it be deleted as expected we have a full copy which we will happily upload.

 

 Posted: 30 Jul 2013 | There are 7 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP'S Crude Smears Part 2

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Tuesday, 30 July 2013, 14:14


Last night we wrote about the scare tactics of Bill Etheridge, Chairman of Dudley & Halesowen UKIP. You can read that blog here.

As usual UKIP's machine whirred into action and attempted to discredit anyone who speaks out against their xenophobic party.

Bill Etheridge discussed our story on various social media sites and this little gem appeared from Dudley UKIP supporter Alex Wilkes.

We contacted Etheridge and told him that the story was a lie and a crude smear.

Etheridge has so far refused to remove the offending post claiming it is freedom of speech despite it being libellous.

Criticism is fine, lies are unacceptable.

Alex Wilkes

Alex Wilkes

Smear

Smear

 Posted: 30 Jul 2013 | There are 5 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP pair stripped of deputy leader roles

posted by: Mark Williams | on: Tuesday, 30 July 2013, 12:12


UKIP politicians Victoria Ayling and Robin Hunter-Clarke have been stripped of their deputy leader roles within the party on Lincolnshire County Council.

A letter leaked to the Echo detailing the demotions has today been confirmed by party leader Chris Pain.

Colin Mair will take over the role on his own.

Councillor Pain said: "I can confirm this is correct.

"Victoria Ayling's attendance has not been the best, but I wouldn't like to comment further on anything else at this stage."

Councillors Ayling and Hunter-Clarke represent Spilsby Fen and Skegness South wards respectively.

UKIP enjoyed a huge surge in the May local elections, winning 16 seats across the county and becoming the official opposition at County Offices.

Lincolnshire Echo

Robin Hunter Clarke

Robin Hunter Clarke

 Posted: 30 Jul 2013 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP Scaremonger

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Monday, 29 July 2013, 20:23


Bill Etheridge

Bill Etheridge

More scaremongering from UKIP, this time from failed West Midlands PCC candidate Bill Etheridge.

Etheridge, who is also the Chairman of Dudley & Halesowen UKIP hit the headlines in 2011 after he and his wife were forced to resign from the Conservative Party after being suspended for posting pictures of themselves holding golliwog dolls on Facebook.

He was the UKIP candidate for the West Midlands Police & Crime commissioner elections in 2012 failing to get past the first round of voting with just a meagre 7/4%

 Posted: 29 Jul 2013 | There are 5 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Manchester UKIP-Civil War

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 28 July 2013, 19:38


.

 Posted: 28 Jul 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP trio could face legal action

posted by: Tim Healy | on: Sunday, 28 July 2013, 17:31


Richardson, Wainwright and Gale

Richardson, Wainwright and Gale

Three councillors are facing a renewed threat of legal action over a statement they made alleging corruption and misuse of public funds.

A special meeting of Rutland County Council will be held on Monday.

Councillors will be asked to support chief executive Helen Briggs and other officers to take legal action for defamation against the three.

UKIP councillors Richard Gale, Nick Wainwright and Dave Richardson have been accused of making remarks in a press statement in June that were "seriously defamatory of officers responsible for the leadership of Rutland County Council".

The council cites references in the statement to "suspect planning approvals and the squandering of millions of pounds of grant funding" and a "growing suspicion and concern of serious fraud and corruption".

The council report also said the statement alleged "the current misuse and misappropriation of public money is an utter disgrace".

A resolution to support legal action against the three men was passed in January.

The council set aside £90,000 for any legal action.

The councillors were warned about their future conduct.

The report being debated on Monday, by the council's interim monitoring officer, Helen Edwards, said: "The allegations in the press release sent by UKIP's press officer and repeated on the 4Rutland website are entirely false."

She said letters had been sent to the three councillors requiring them to remove the statement from the 4Rutland website, refrain from making further allegations and provide a full and unequivocal retraction and apology to the chief executive and senior officers.

They have been given until Wednesday to comply.

UKIP group leader Richard Gale said: "All we are doing is raising justifiable concerns.

"We want to be able to sit around the table with other councillors and officers and talk the matters out. But that is being denied us.

"We have taken legal advice and have sought a deferment in replying to the council's letters so we can take further advice.

"I shall attend the meeting on Monday, but I do not know what it will achieve."

A spokesman for the council said the meeting would go ahead as planned.

The original Leicester Mercury article can be found here

 Posted: 28 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
The Decline Of UKIP?

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Sunday, 28 July 2013, 17:04


.

 Posted: 28 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
What Ever Happened To UKIP Scrutiny?

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Friday, 26 July 2013, 16:01


David Ginley

David Ginley

I seem to remember reading somewhere that UKIP would be paying more attention to the background of its potential candidates and officials.

Maybe I just imagined it or maybe it was just spin by UKIP leader Nigel Farage after a series of embarrassing stories appeared in the national media criticising the xenophobic party.

It appears that UKIP's myopic attitude has continued with an announcement that a new branch of UKIP is being established in Calderdale,West Yorkshire.

UKIP's very own clown prince Godfrey Bloom MEP launched the Calderdale branch at a garden centre in Brighouse on Wednesday and introduced the chairman of the new Calderdale branch as David Ginley.

Ginley is a well known politician in the area and has a colourful past which is well documented.

A former Conservative councillor, Ginley was embroiled in controversy in 1993 after appearing in court after voting twice in a council election. He was found guilty and was ordered to do 200 hours of community service plus costs. Ginley claimed that as he paid poll tax on two properties he should be entitled to two votes.

In 2003 Ginley again appeared before Calderdale magistrates and admitted two charges of forgery. He was warned by the judge that he could be jailed for the offences which arose from an unpaid plumbing bill following work carried out at one of his many rental properties. Ginley was subsequently handed a 180 hour community order plus costs.

Ginley held the Warley seat on Calderdale Council from 1998 until he lost his seat in 2004. He was again voted back on the council in 2006 and in 2007 was nominated by the Conservatives to be Mayor of Calderdale.

In 2010 he was again arrested by West Yorkshire Police this time on suspicion of electoral fraud. Ginley claimed that confusion had arose following the collection of proxy vote forms.

Two years later in 2012 he was kicked out of the local Conservative Party after accusing him of "unethical practices" after he allegedly asked someone to stand as a “Liberal” candidate undermining the election prospects of the Liberal Democrat Party candidate.

As UKIP's standards are so low they have welcomed Ginley with open arms.

We think Ginley and UKIP probably deserve each other.

 Posted: 26 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Another UKIP Racist Uncovered

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Wednesday, 24 July 2013, 15:24


Andrew Meloy

Andrew Meloy

Here we have another name nominated for UKIP racist of the year. Our list is getting quite long now.

Let me introduce you to Andrew "Molly" Meloy, A UKIP supporter from Erith in the London Borough of Bexley.

Meloy also uses the name "Andrew UKIP Meloy" on Facebook.

A well known local darts player in Erith, Meloy is also a keen contributor to various online forums and discussion groups, most of the time using these to voice his racist point of view.

Meloy is a real charmer, UKIP no doubt welcome him with open arms.

 Posted: 24 Jul 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP's Crude Smears

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Monday, 22 July 2013, 21:35


As we place UKIP under closer scrutiny we appear to be ruffling a few feathers along the way.

Naturally, we don't expect UKIP to be particularly happy about our revelations and it should come as no surprise that some of its supporters want to bite back.

Over the past few days some rather crude attempts at smears are appearing on various social networks including a fabricated letter from myself.

However, some of the more gullible UKIP followers would like it to appear geniune. Bad news, it isn't and is full of inaccuracies,half truths and downright lies.

For the record the email address is false as is my title of "Director". There is no "Operation Purple Rain" either, Purple Rain is purely the name of the UKIP blog.

Would we really need to pay people for screenshots? Not really, we do a pretty good job of that for free.

As smears go that was a pretty amateur attempt, you fell at the first hurdle.

 

 Posted: 22 Jul 2013 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
'Spiked drinkí and the night Ukipís party turned sour

posted by: Robert Mendick | on: Monday, 22 July 2013, 17:41


Steve Crowther

Steve Crowther

The party faithful at Ukip’s gala dinner were in buoyant mood. Hours earlier, Nigel Farage had delivered a galvanising leader’s speech at the party’s 2012 conference.

The dinner afterwards at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Birmingham offered the leadership and rank and file the opportunity to have a drink, relax and mingle.

The meal was a largely jolly affair, accompanied as it was by a fundraising auction that – this being Ukip – included such desirable items as tea bags in a fancy box and a woven silk portrait of the Queen.

“This was a gathering that featured little of the bombast and none of the slickness of the larger parties’ shindigs,” reported one commentator at the time.

Yet 10 months on, the repercussions of that night’s events are still being felt.

A female activist has claimed that, amid the frivolity of the evening, she had been subjected to a “brutal assault” by a senior figure in Young Independence, Ukip’s youth wing. She said her drink had been spiked and her dress “ripped down”. She had been spat on, called a “whore”, then photographed in a state of undress to ensure her silence.

The claims finally became public two weeks ago when The Telegraph’s Mandrake column reported some of the details, leaving Ukip open to possible criticism of effectively covering up a crime by not calling in the police.

Last week, Ukip responded by passing to this newspaper a dossier detailing the claims and counter-claims for what happened that night and in the weeks and months following.

What is not contested is that the alleged incident followed the gala dinner on Friday Sept 21, presided over by Mr Farage and the party’s chairman, Steve Crowther. The alleged victim had been placed at a prominent table by Lisa Duffy, Ukip’s party director.

The events that followed are murkier and disputed. At the heart of the case is the woman’s claim – made 12 days after the conference ended – that she had been subjected to a violent assault after her drink had been spiked.

She made the allegations in a number of emails to Miss Duffy and, as a result, the party opened an internal investigation conducted by Michael Greaves, one of its most senior officials. Mr Greaves is Ukip’s general secretary, but also a lawyer with experience at the International Criminal Court.

Last week he released to The Sunday Telegraph a report he had compiled on the case, based on the alleged victim’s emails, an interview with one of the alleged attackers and eyewitness accounts. He did not interview the woman either face-to-face or by telephone.

Mr Greaves has also written a separate, longer account for Mr Farage and Ukip officials.

In the version handed to this newspaper, he concluded that the “matter had no legs whatsoever”. After interviewing or taking statements from, among others, Mr Farage’s wife, Kirsten, Mr Greaves felt that the alleged victim’s story contained contradictions that did not stand up to wider scrutiny.

He said that she had been drinking so heavily “she must have been close to causing herself ill-health” and that the day after the attack she “is seen to be in perfectly good nick”, casting doubt on her memory of events and her claim to have been traumatised.

Mr Greaves’s report outlines events from the beginning of the evening of the gala dinner. By then, according to the Ukip account, the alleged victim had already caused a stir.

Mrs Farage had witnessed the woman “coming on strongly” to her husband. The woman, who according to witnesses was “very drunk”, is alleged to have invited Mr Farage back to her room before she was escorted from the party leader’s presence. Mr Farage had “politely declined” her offer.

With dinner over, many of the activists went on to a party hosted by Paul Staines, better known as Guido Fawkes, the political blogger. The woman went too.

Mr Greaves wrote in his report: “C [the alleged victim] was again seen by KF [Kirsten Farage] who saw that she was still very very drunk. KF indicates that she continued to drink prodigiously, perhaps 10 further glasses of wine.”

He added: “It is after this period of alcohol consumption that C claims that she was assaulted by having her dress ripped, that she was spat upon and was photographed. One of those involved with her called her a whore.”

The next day, according to the Ukip account, the woman appeared to have made a remarkable recovery. Mrs Farage and Miss Duffy both gave evidence that she was “chatting, laughing and smoking” outside the conference venue and did not look “particularly traumatised”.

Four days later, on Wednesday Sept 26, the woman wrote to Miss Duffy thanking her for seating her at the table, saying: “I am really impressed with the direction that Ukip is taking.”

Eight days on, her tone had changed. In a second email to Miss Duffy, she laid out what she then recalled had happened to her.

“Two of your Young Independence members physically assaulted me quite brutally outside the Crowne Plaza in Birmingham on the gala night,” she wrote.

“I also realise that one of my drinks was spiked and the effects of this lasted two days, including loss of vision which was terrifying and loss of memory which unfortunately for me returned this week. I’ve been really traumatised by this and am not wishing to take things further due to threats being made against me.”

Two days later on Oct 6, the woman wrote again: “I’m still very traumatised… One young guy took me outside, ripped down my dress while another took photographs, spat on me and called me a whore. All I remember is someone saying it was set up.”

She complained of feeling “numb to everything around me” as a result of the spiked drink, and suffered from heavy nosebleeds.

She added: “One young man needs slinging out of the party and reporting to the police. I haven’t done the latter since I didn’t want a scandal for everyone who works so hard in Ukip or a scandal for my family.”

On Oct 18, she wrote again to Miss Duffy: “I am afraid that what I have been through is a very serious matter and I will need to get the police involved. I’m currently seeing a solicitor about the actions of [X] and two others who were also involved in what is an assault.”

It was at this point that Ukip’s leadership, with the knowledge of Mr Farage, asked Mr Greaves to investigate.

“It is not at any stage in this matter for Ukip to report matters to the police,” wrote Mr Greaves in his analysis for The Telegraph.

He drove from Brussels to the UK to interview the alleged attacker – referred to throughout the dossier as X to protect his identity. During the interview, X denied the attack and also gave an alibi.

Mr Greaves concluded after the interview that X was “on the balance of probabilities” telling the truth.

He wrote: “Apart from what I believe to be an untruth about his taking medication, which may be explicable on the basis that someone wanting advancement in Ukip might well decide to conceal a medical condition which seriously affects mood and temperament, the writer [Mr Greaves] had no basis whatsoever to conclude anything other than that X was telling the truth or, at the least, may be telling the truth on the balance of probabilities.”

Following the interview with X, Mr Greaves decided no disciplinary action could be taken against him and wrote a report for party officials and for Mr Farage outlining why.

In his account to this newspaper, he wrote: “At this stage the complaint is, on any view, in a sorry state. C has given accounts which as to material matters are inconsistent with one another, certainly to the eye of a skilled criminal cross-examiner.”

He pointed to a series of inconsistencies, including the email on Sept 26 which made no mention of an assault. The email, he explained, “fatally undermines her later assertions of having been assaulted and having had he [sic] drink spiked”.

Mr Greaves also pointed to discrepancies between her account and statements from Miss Duffy and Mrs Farage among others, not least the alleged victim’s claim that she had suffered nose bleeds and loss of vision, adding: “The evidence of KF and LD entirely contradicts this.”

On Nov 9, Mr Greaves also wrote to the woman, inviting her to make a formal complaint to Ukip, but advising her that if she wished to do so “it is inevitable that other people will have to be involved in the affair”.

In his account, he added: “One might properly and reasonably conclude that any solicitor advising her would give her advice that once she makes a complaint of this kind it would inevitably find its way into the public domain, even before the advent of the egregious era of so-called 'social media’.”

The woman, who had been to see a lawyer, wrote back promptly saying that she did not wish to lodge a formal complaint with Ukip. But she also wrote on Nov 12 that she had been “blackmailed into keeping quiet and that photographs taken outside the hotel would be used against her”. In the letter, the alleged victim also said for the first time that a woman had “set up the attack”.

Mr Greaves saw this as further proof of her constantly changing story. He also concluded that the attack was not a serious one. “The only complaint made had been one of assault by battery, to the extent of the ripping of a dress (to an unknown extent) and spitting. On any view, it is unlikely that that would attract more than a conditional discharge from the magistrates,” he wrote.

He also pointed out that there was no “sexual aspect” to the case except for the woman’s approach to Mr Farage earlier in the evening when she invited him to room.

Mr Greaves informed Mr Farage of his findings and at that point closed the file on the case.

Ukip’s leadership believed that was the end of the matter, but details began to leak out. In March, the alleged victim posted some of her allegations on a social networking site. “Too many witnesses to what happened. Some have evidence,” she wrote in one message, followed by: “Starting to write a short book about the attack. Finding it incredibly painful but will shame those involved. Someone spat in my face too.”

A few days later she added: “If you’ve been drink spiked go to the police, get evidence.”

Later she wrote: “I don’t know which was worse: waking up the next am and not being able to see properly or blood running down my face and not remembering a thing.”

She has never gone to the police and the West Midlands force has no record of any allegation of assault.

The woman still stands by her story, while Ukip disputes it. The truth is that what actually happened at Ukip’s conference that night in September may never be fully known.

Original Telegraph Article Here

 Posted: 22 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Ukip activist's trauma over 'assault' at party conference

posted by: Robert Mendick | on: Monday, 22 July 2013, 17:13


Ukip's general secretary reported to Nigel Farage that the womanís story was inconsistent Photo: Getty Images

Ukip's general secretary reported to Nigel Farage that the womanís story was inconsistent Photo: Getty Images

The Telegraph can disclose that the woman’s claims were investigated internally by a Ukip official who concluded that there was no reason to call in the police.

The Ukip inquiry was closed at the end of last year after Michael Greaves, the party’s general secretary, reported to its leader Nigel Farage, that the woman’s story was inconsistent and that if any offence had been committed it was a minor one.

In response, Mr Greaves provided a report for The Telegraph based on his investigation into the alleged incident.

His report discloses that Mr Farage’s wife Kirsten gave evidence to the Ukip inquiry that the woman had flirted with her husband and had drunk up to ten glasses of wine before the alleged attack.

The alleged assault took place on September 21 last year at a hotel in Birmingham following a gala dinner presided over by Mr Farage.

Twelve days later, the alleged victim wrote an email to Ukip’s party director Lisa Duffy, claiming she had been “physically assaulted... quite brutally” by two members of Young Independence, Ukip’s youth wing.

In the email, the woman wrote: “I also realise that one of my drinks was spiked and the effects of this lasted two days, including loss of vision which was terrifying and loss of memory which unfortunately for me returned this week. I’ve been really traumatised by this and am not wishing to take things further due to threats being made against me.”

Two days later she sent a further email to Miss Duffy, in which she wrote: “One young guy took me outside, ripped down my dress while another took photographs, spat on me and called me a whore. All I remember is someone saying it was set up.”

She added: “One young man needs slinging out of the party and reporting to the police. I haven’t done the latter since I didn’t want a scandal for everyone who works so hard in Ukip or a scandal for my family.”

Mr Greaves, formerly a lawyer at the International Criminal Court but who now works for a Euro-sceptic political group in Brussels as well as being Ukip’s general secretary, interviewed one of the woman’s alleged attackers.

He concluded that the man, who denied the assault and gave an alibi, “was telling the truth or, at the least, may be telling the truth on the balance of probabilities”.

Mr Greaves reported that the man had lied about taking medication, but said that “may be explicable on the basis that someone wanting advancement in Ukip might well decide to conceal a medical condition which seriously affects mood and temperament”.

Mr Greaves also took a statement from Mrs Farage, who alleged that on the night the woman had been drinking heavily and was “coming on strongly” to her husband whom she invited to her hotel bedroom. Mr Greaves concluded that the alleged victim’s account was “entirely inconsistent” with evidence provided by Mrs Farage and Miss Duffy, whom he described as “honest, accurate and reliable”.

They had testified that the woman, who Mrs Farage claimed to have seen drink about ten glasses of wine, had been in “perfectly good spirits” at the next day’s conference and did not look “particularly traumatised”.

In November last year, Mr Greaves wrote to the alleged victim inviting her to make a formal complaint to Ukip but advising her that should she do so “other people will have to be involved in the affair” Mr Greaves also suggested that such a complaint “would inevitably find its way into the public domain”.

The woman 'promptly’ replied that she did not wish not to take the case further.

Mr Greaves also concluded that the allegations amounted to no more than common assault and that the likely sentence would be a conditional discharge, should the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) “consider it worthy of mounting a full scale trial”.

Mr Greaves said yesterday he had not interviewed the alleged victim.

“I personally have never spoken to her on the telephone. Or face-to-face,” said Mr Greaves. “If she had made a complaint I would have interviewed her as part of the process of mounting a disciplinary action. It requires a complaint.”

Mr Greaves added: “For what it’s worth something may have happened to her but I don’t think for a moment she got the right person. That’s my guess. I could be totally wrong but until you have a hearing on the matter you are never going to know.”

His written report also addressed claims that the woman had been sexually assaulted, which were being aired in Ukip circles.

The Telegraph two weeks ago reported the existence of the claims. In response Mr Greaves wrote in his documents that “at no time during this process... did the complainant suggest in any way that this incident had involved her being raped”.

West Midlands police said last week that it had no record of the alleged incident, but said it would investigate if a complaint was made. Complaints can be made by third parties.

Original Telegraph Article Here

 

 Posted: 22 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Female Ukip activist alleges assault after Ďdrink spikedí at party conference

posted by: Adam Withnall | on: Monday, 22 July 2013, 16:22


A woman has claimed she was assaulted, spat on and called a “whore” at a Ukip gala dinner, according to a report into the scandal during the 2012 party conference in Birmingham.

The unnamed party activist afterwards sent emails to Ukip director Lisa Duffy, in which she wrote “one of my drinks was spiked”, alleging that she was subsequently assaulted, and that she had been blackmailed into keeping quiet.

Later messages contained more detail of the events that occurred on 21 September last year, following a dinner where party leader Nigel Farage gave a speech.

The woman said: “One young guy took me outside, ripped down my dress while another took photographs, spat on me and called me a whore. All I remember is someone saying it was set up.”

She added: “One young man needs slinging out of the party and reporting to the police. I haven’t done the latter since I didn’t want a scandal for everyone who works so hard in Ukip or a scandal for my family.”

With the knowledge of Mr Farage, Ukip then commissioned one of its most senior officials, Michael Greaves, to investigate the incident. Mr Greaves is a lawyer who previously worked at the International Criminal Court, and he proceeded to conduct interviews with the alleged victim, attacker, and key witnesses including Mr Farage’s wife Kirsten.

The result of Mr Greaves’ findings was that “the complaint is, on any view, in a sorry state”, and he recommended the file on the matter be closed. The allegations have only come to light now because of leaked details reported by The Telegraph, and the fact that Mr Greaves then provided the newspaper with his full report.

The Ukip general secretary concluded that there was no need to get the police involved in the matter, adding that even if the man accused was found guilty the most likely sentence would be a conditional discharge at the Magistrates’ Court.

He also said that the only “sexual aspect” to the whole case was that the woman was reported to be “coming on strongly” to Mr Farage earlier in the night, apparently after drinking a large quantity of wine. Mr Greaves said that inconsistencies in the allegations and an apparently honest defence and alibi from the accused meant he could not recommend the matter go to the police.

He nonetheless told The Telegraph: “For what it’s worth something may have happened to her but I don’t think for a moment she got the right person. That’s my guess.”

The activist reportedly still stands by her story, and is claimed to have written on a social networking website that she was: “Starting to write a short book about the attack.”

Original article published in The Independent here

 Posted: 22 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Without immigrants, our country wouldnít function. So letís give it a go...

posted by: Mehdi Hasan | on: Monday, 22 July 2013, 15:22


The underground would be filthy - 95 per cent of London Underground cleaning staff are foreign-born. Photograph: Getty Images

The underground would be filthy - 95 per cent of London Underground cleaning staff are foreign-born. Photograph: Getty Images

I have a modest proposal for the likes of Ukip, MigrationWatch, the Home Secretary, David Goodhart, Paul Dacre and, of course, the BNP. Why not call for “A Day Without Immigrants?” Wouldn’t that demonstrate, once and for all, that neither our economy nor our society needs migrants? That they are a burden, rather than a blessing?

“A Day Without Immigrants” was the name given to a rather innovative series of protests in the US in 2006, which brought more than a million Latinos on to the streets of 50 cities, from New York to Los Angeles. They boycotted shops, schools and their places of work to try to highlight the plight of undocumented migrant workers.

But here’s how I’d implement a similar boycott here: anyone in the UK born abroad or with a parent born abroad would stay at home for 24 hours. Any business or organisation founded by an immigrant or the child of an immigrant would close for the day.

Britain would be transformed – but, regrettably for the immigration-bashers, in a wholly negative way. In fact, I suspect it would be a pretty awful 24 hours for most Britons, dark and dystopian, even. Think Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later – but without migrants, rather than with zombies.

Let’s start with the trivial stuff. Who would serve you in restaurants or coffee shops? Who would make your sandwiches and wraps at lunchtime? What would be the point of going out to eat in the evening if there were no longer any Chinese, Thai, Malaysian, Indian, Japanese, Turkish, Lebanese, Persian, Italian, Spanish and, yes, French restaurants open?

How about your health? Who’d patch you up and prescribe your medicines? Ministers and their outriders in the right-wing press like to scaremonger about the spiralling costs of so-called health tourism (which amounts to a shocking 0.01 per cent of the £109bn NHS budget) and exaggerate the numbers of migrant families that turn up expecting free treatment in our overstretched A&E departments. The reality, as the chair of the council of the Royal College of GPs, Dr Clare Gerada, has pointed out, is that “you are much more likely to have an immigrant caring for you than sitting up in front of the emergency department”. About 30 per cent of the doctors and 40 per cent of the nurses working in the health service were born abroad. Put simply, the NHS could not survive 24 hours without its migrant workforce.

The same applies to the social-care sector. If you have a sick parent living in a care home, you might have to take the day off to look after them. In 2009 a fifth of all care assistants and home carers – 135,000 people in total – were foreign-born; in London, 60 per cent of care workers were migrants. Speaking of taking the day off, neither the Deputy Prime Minister nor the leader of the opposition would have to turn up to Westminster for PMQs – Nick Clegg is the son of a Dutch mother and half-Russian father; Ed Miliband is the child of Polish refugees.

Meanwhile, the Chancellor would have to go to the Commons to warn that “A Day Without Immigrants” would, if extended over a year, force him to introduce a further £7bn of spending cuts and/or tax rises. Why? Migrants boost the British economy by £7bn a year, according to an OECD study published in June. That’s the equivalent of an extra 2p on the basic rate of income tax.

Sticking with the economy, we’d have to board up iconic British stores such as Marks & Spencer (co-founder: Michael Marks of Belarus), Selfridges (founder: the American Harry Gordon Selfridge) and Tesco (founder: Jacob Kohen, son of Avram, a Polish migrant). UK holidaymakers would have to cancel their cheap flights on easyJet (founder: the Greekborn Stelios Haji-Ioannou).

Our universities, a multibillion-pound export industry, would take a hit, too, if foreign students stayed away. One in ten students in British universities comes from outside the EU and the fees that students from other countries pay are a bigger source of income for most universities than research grants.

What about sport? Imagine going to watch a Premier League game midweek as a Liverpool fan. Luis Suárez wouldn’t be playing. If you’re a Man United fan, you’d miss out on the ball skills of Robin van Persie; if you’re a Man City fan, it’d be Yaya Touré on strike. Chelsea fans? Say goodbye to Juan Mata and Eden Hazard.

Incidentally, if you were planning on using the Tube to go to watch Chelsea play, you’d find it in a pretty filthy state, the train platforms tagged with graffiti and strewn with rubbish: 95 per cent of London Underground cleaning staff are foreign-born. It wouldn’t just be the District Line that was dirty, it would also be your place of work: 89 per cent of office cleaners in the capital are migrants.

But the countryside would be fine, right? Wrong. Imagine all those unpicked crops and the effect: the rise in food prices, supermarkets opting for (cheaper) foreign over domestic produce, fruit farmers on their knees. The truth is that “native” Brits have not been interested in fruit-picking for years and, as the Home Office’s own Migration Advisory Committee warned in May, many of the UK’s fruit-picking businesses could close without new migrant workers from outside the EU.

On immigration, we hear constantly that voters don’t trust the official statistics or studies (a recent Ipsos MORI poll found that the public thinks that immigrants make up 31 per cent of the population –when the official figure is 13 per cent). So this may be the only way to win hearts and minds. A great boycott. A one-day strike by immigrants and their children across the UK, coupled with a ban on the use of immigrant-founded businesses by the “indigenous” population.

For a mere 24 hours. Let’s do it. And if it doesn’t transform public opinion, well, at least I’ll have had the day off work.

Mehdi Hasan is a contributing writer for the New Statesman and the political director of the Huffington Post UK, where this column is crossposted

 Posted: 22 Jul 2013 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Is Ukip going down the toilet of history?

posted by: Iain Martin | on: Friday, 19 July 2013, 15:39


Do you remember Nigel Farage? Politically incorrect chap in a pinstripe suit, covert coat, cigarette, pint of ale in hand? We're not quite at the stage where the leader of Ukip should be posted missing, but there is no doubt that his star has faded since the extraordinary period in early May when his party enjoyed its breakthrough moment in the local elections and it was impossible to turn on the television without seeing the grinning visage of Farage. Now he is simply not on TV and radio or in the newspapers all that often. It is possible to go for days on end without seeing him mentioned.

Some hardline Ukippers will probably say that this is because the new boss of the BBC Tony Hall was summoned to Brussels with all the other Establishment media Europhile agents of the EU for a dressing down by The Dark Lord (Peter Mandelson), Manuel Barroso and Baroness Ashton. At this gathering assorted hacks were ordered to stop mentioning Farage in the hope that he and his party would go away. (Note to Ukippers: no such meeting took place, or so they say …)

The more mundane reality is that this is often how it works after a surge such as that enjoyed by Ukip or a political event greatly out of the ordinary. Following the initial excitement people, even journalists, run out of ways to say: wow, look at that!

It will also suit Farage to an extent. He and his advisers have a lot of behind the scenes work to do ahead of the autumn and then their push in next year's European elections. In the local elections they got away – just – with the adverse media exposure that several of their more, er, interesting candidates attracted. They are trying to tighten procedures, raise money under the guidance of former Tory donor Stuart Wheeler, and get a battle plan together that stands a chance of not blowing up on the launch pad. It all contributes to Farage – who for years has worked at a tremendous rate, travelling around the country – being preoccupied and not being quite as visible as he was.

With Farage fading, the Tories have spent the last couple of months recovering in terms of morale, with quite a few of them convincing themselves that they might actually win the next election on the back of rising employment and the much sharper approach to campaigning that Lynton Crosby has brought.

But for the Tory revival to become real and sustained – and more than a summer flash in the pan – the Conservatives need Ukip and Farage to collapse. They need Ukip to disappear down the toilet of history. Is that happening or likely to?

This week's ICM poll which put Labour and the Tories level at 36 per cent had Ukip plunging down to seven per cent. But then the ten preceding polls have put the party on 10, 20, 19, 13, 18, 13, 12, 13, 10 and 12. Was ICM a rogue poll, or does it suggest a serious erosion of the Ukip vote? Let's see where everyone is after the party conference season.

Yet, for all the current Conservative excitement about their potentially improved prospects, the electoral mathematical realities simply have not changed in two crucial respects. First, Labour's core vote was rebuilt when the coalition was formed. Left of centre voters who had defected from Labour to the Lib Dems in disgust over Iraq and other matters went home to Labour when the Liberals got into bed with the Conservatives. Ed Miliband's party starts not at the 29 per cent the party got in 2010, but somewhere up closer to 34 per cent. Married with the manner in which the boundaries favour Labour, the opposition begins with an electoral head-start that makes it tough for Cameron.

And then there is Ukip. I have pointed out repeatedly, on and off, since 2010 that even just the 3.1 per cent the party got last time – when Farage was not leader – was more than 919,000 votes. Ukip does not need to get up to, say, 15 per cent. It just needs six, seven or eight per cent, perhaps a couple of million votes, to have an enormous impact. Cut it any way you like it, and there is evidence some of the Ukip surge has been fuelled with help from Labour voters annoyed on subjects such as immigration, but Farage getting two million votes would still make life very difficult for the Tories.

Crosby's recommended approach on how to deal with this is surely correct. Cameron has no option other than to stick with his simplified message around welfare, controlling immigration, the economy and Labour weakness, keep pushing it, stay calm and hope that over the coming months sufficient former Tories drift back and forget that they were once so outraged at Cameron in particular and the political class in general that they were prepared to back Farage in a fit of rage. It is quite possible that this happens and that Ukip can be forced back into single figures. But does it feel, at this stage, as though Farage's forces will wither and end up back roughly where they started in 2010 when David Cameron still fell short against Gordon Brown? Nope.

You can read the original Telegraph blog here

 Posted: 19 Jul 2013 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
A UKIP Froth Fest

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Friday, 19 July 2013, 10:33


Just when you thought the UKIP xenophobes had calmed down and taken a much needed chill pill it appears that another bout of racist scaremongering erupted last night.

This time the froth fest took part on Nigel Farage's personal Facebook page in response to yet another Daily Mail article about Romanian & Bulgarian immigration.

As top be expected the UKIP bigots lapped it up and I have copied some of the more interesting comments below for your perusal.

 Posted: 19 Jul 2013 | There are 6 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
I was booted out of UKIP for my links to trade unions

posted by: . | on: Friday, 19 July 2013, 07:47


A former UK Independence Party (UKIP) candidate in Devon, who followed Nigel Farage on his infamous tour of Scotland, claims to have been expelled for being a trade unionist.

David Smith, a retired teacher and bus driver who was in line to stand as an MEP, has branded his local Exeter branch a "renegade" operation and appealed to the colourful leader to "sort it out".

Mr Smith, 64, who braved what Mr Farage branded as anti-English protests in Aberdeen and Edinburgh, said he was told his continued membership of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) was a case of "mixed loyalties".

The party has angrily rejected the accusations as "fictional" and "ludicrous" – claiming it has growing support among disgruntled former Labour voters – and said Mr Smith's membership was simply not renewed because he was "not a team player".

UKIP has become a political force to be reckoned with this year, taking a 23.2% share of the overall vote to gain four seats on Devon County Council for the first time in May. But in Exeter, where Labour won two seats, taking their tally to seven, the party failed to make an impact on Labour or the Tories, who hold the remaining two seats.

Mr Smith was hoping to be selected to become a candidate for the European Parliament in 2015 until he received a letter dated June 17, from Devon-based party chairman Steve Crowther, declining his application to renew his membership and refunding his subscription.

Mr Crowther blamed the refusal on "repeated and sustained round-robin e-mails" making "all kinds of allegations". "These allegations have been fully investigated and found to have no basis, yet the e-mails have continued," he wrote.

Mr Smith claims the decision to exclude him should be taken by the National Executive Committee. He said there was an "unofficial policy" against union members, adding: "I want to stay in UKIP to fight EU domination but I have been pushed out – my question to Nigel is are you going to sort it out?"

In a reply to Mr Crowther's letter, he added: "After travelling to the other end of the UK, canvassing and delivering leaflets in the housing estates of Aberdeen in the run up to the Don by-election where I actively supported our candidate Otto Inglis and Party leader against vociferous demonstrators, some of which were anti-fascists – this was some reward."

UKIP South West spokesman James Carver said: "Mr Smith's membership application was not renewed due to circumstances surrounding a breach of electoral law, and his failure to address that important issue to the satisfaction of the local branch committee, when challenged.

"The allegations in his letter are clearly misplaced and inaccurate – UKIP has many trade unionists as members, and at no time whatsoever was he censured for any trade union activity or membership. This is just sour grapes from a former member, who would not work as part of a team, at a time when UKIP is going from strength to strength."

You can read the original Western Morning News article here


 Posted: 19 Jul 2013 | There are 6 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP Headhunter ?

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Wednesday, 17 July 2013, 17:06


Brian Higginson

Brian Higginson

Just over a week ago UKIP leader Nigel Farage paid a trip to Northern Ireland and spoke at a UKIP meeting held at The Stormont Hotel in Belfast.

Whilst there he met up with party officials and supporters from across the whole of the country.

One of those devoted followers that Farage met was UKIP's Lagan Valley spokesman Brian Higginson from the city of Lisburn.

Former UDR man Higginson is well known in The Lagan Valley, regularly appearing in the local media in his role as the chairman of the Lisburn Marching Bands Forum.

Apart from flute bands Higginson is a keen follower of football and in particular Chelsea Football Club. He also appears to be a big fan of The Chelsea Headhunters, a notorious hooligan gang who actively supported various white supremacist organisations, such as Combat 18 and the National Front, and to Northern Irish loyalist paramilitary organisations, such as the Ulster Defence Association and Ulster Volunteer Force.

I wonder if he discussed them whilst shaking Nigel Farage's hand ?

Higginson with Nigel Farage

Higginson with Nigel Farage

Headhunter Fan?

Headhunter Fan?

 Posted: 17 Jul 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
John Pagett- Bristol UKIP Racist

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Tuesday, 16 July 2013, 21:41


Just in case they claim he isn't a member

Just in case they claim he isn't a member

Plenty of racist scaremongering here, this time from Bristol UKIP member and prospective candidate John Pagett

 Posted: 16 Jul 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP Homophobia

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Friday, 12 July 2013, 17:26


Just a litlle bit of UKIP homophobia, this time on Twitter from Brighton UKIP member Laurence Michaels.

No doubt he will claim he has been hacked and UKIP will claim he isn't actually a member.

 Posted: 12 Jul 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Just An Average UKIP Supporter

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Friday, 12 July 2013, 14:07


I'm sure you will all remember this familiar face.

Patrick Moore was a regular face on British TV for decades and was loved by many. Unfortunately, Moore had a dark side, he was a bigot and also a huge supporter of UKIP, which probably comes as no real surprise.

In the 1970s, Moore was the chairman of the anti-immigration United Country Party and was also a huge fan of the racist MP Enoch Powell.

This interesting little quote was posted to me the other day by one of our supporters.

Funny, but I don't remember UKIP ever condemning Patrick Moore for such blatant racism. But when it comes to racists within their party UKIP have a habit of closing their eyes.

 

 Posted: 12 Jul 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Ukip: Probe ordered into 'sex attackí at party conference

posted by: Richard Eden | on: Sunday, 7 July 2013, 17:47


Nick Clegg has been widely criticised for the Liberal Democrats’ lacklustre response to allegations of misconduct made against his party’s former chief executive, Lord Rennard.

Mandrake hears that Nigel Farage is, however, keeping quiet about a sex scandal in the UK Independence Party that is potentially even more serious.

A young Ukip activist claims that she was raped at its last conference by a senior figure in in the Eurosceptic party’s youth wing after a reception at which her drink was spiked with an unknown substance.

When the woman informed senior Ukip officials of what had happened to her, the party did not inform police but carried out an internal “investigation” which resulted in no action being taken against her alleged attacker. The victim has left the party in disgust.

“I don’t know which was worse,” she says. “Waking up the next morning and not being able to see properly or blood running down my face.”

The attack is alleged to have taken place at the Crowne Plaza hotel, in Birmingham, where Ukip’s annual conference was held last September.

It is claimed that at a reception at the hotel hosted by the political website Guido Fawkes, which was attended by some of the party’s senior members, the woman’s drink was tampered with. The attack is alleged to have taken place later that night at a room at the hotel.

“Obviously, I am aware of this story and have known about it for some time,” says Gawain Towler, Ukip’s spokesman. “I was one of the first people to be told about it because I was at the party.”

He says: “When the allegation came to us, we were appalled, and took it extremely seriously. We asked our party secretary, Michael Greaves, who is a former Crown Prosecutor and member of the International Criminal Court to look into it.

“He concluded that the victim was unreliable. We would have been perfectly happy if if she had gone to the police, but she didn’t.”

Privately, a Ukip official has made a series of allegations about the accuser, discrediting her account.

Friends of the alleged victim say she did not want to subject herself to the “trauma” of a police investigation and potential court case.

Earlier this year, the alleged attacker is said to have been confronted about the allegations in public by Alexandra Swann, 24, a former deputy chairman of the Conservatives’ youth wing who defected to Ukip.

You can read the original telegraph article here

 Posted: 7 Jul 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Split emerges in UKIP over future of the Assembly

posted by: David Williamson | on: Friday, 5 July 2013, 17:21


John Bufton

John Bufton

A split on the future of the Assembly has emerged in Ukip with Welsh MEP John Bufton restating his commitment to seek its abolition.

Last week Ukip leader Nigel Farage said he was “relaxed about a federal future for the UK” in which the Assembly gained power over policing.

But Mr Bufton gave a forthright rejection of Mr Farage’s views and suggested a new party could form to seek the scrapping of the Assembly.

He said: “[Mr Farage] said he was comfortable with devolution. I’m certainly not.”

Mr Farage had admitted an “old guard” in his party wanted to abolish the Assembly but he said the results of two referendums should be respected.

Mr Bufton said in a television interview: “Well, I’m part of the old school. I’ve been opposed to the Assembly from its inception and remain so.

“If the party changes its policy, which I think it might do, I think it’s a big big mistake and basically there would be no difference between us and the Conservatives then. So if we lose that, it’s our main plank, that we want to abolish it, then there’s an opening for another party perhaps.”

Ukip’s 2010 general election manifesto committed the party to keeping the Assembly but having MPs perform the work of AMs.

It stated a Ukip Government would: “Retain devolved national assemblies but replace the representatives with Westminster MPs from the same nation. The 129 Scottish MSPs, 60 Welsh AMs and (in time) 108 Northern Irish MLAs would be replaced with their Westminster MPs.

“These MPs would then spend one week a month on devolved business and the rest of their time at Westminster. English MPs would meet in Westminster for English-only days as an ‘English Parliament’.”

Mr Farage has since described the 2010 manifesto as a “horlicks”.

The party is now preparing for the Anglesey by-election, described by Mr Farage as “an important moment for us in Wales”.

A Conservative source commented on the different views of the two Ukip politicians, saying: “This has really exposed a split within Ukip about how it responds to devolution. Most of the [parties] who were sceptical about the Assembly have now accepted the reality of the Assembly and want to make it work better.

“I think people really need to know where Ukip stand on devolution and who speaks for Ukip on devolution.”

Mr Farage today predicted all three main Westminster parties will go into the election promising a referendum on Europe.

Commenting on Conservative MP James Wharton’s push to enshrine a commitment to a referendum in law, he said: “Today’s debate wouldn’t even be happening if the parties didn’t feel challenged by Ukip. Labour will promise a referendum too and the Lib Dems will promise a referendum too – of course.

“At the moment Miliband may look indecisive and weak. He is not going to want to lose a general election on this question. They will all promise a referendum.”

The original Wales Online article can be found here

 Posted: 5 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP 'hypocrisy' exposed in vote on Marine Le Pen's immunity

posted by: Arlene McCarthy | on: Friday, 5 July 2013, 15:46


Marine Le Pen

Marine Le Pen

The party led by Nigel Farage believes it is acceptable to oppose all EU legislation, except when it helps their political bedfellows, writes MEP

The European Parliament in Strasbourg this week voted to remove the immunity of the French far-right leader and MEP Marine Le Pen. She has been pursued by French prosecutors for incitement to hatred and discrimination after comparing Muslims praying in the streets to the Nazi occupation of France.

Le Pen said: "For those who like to talk about World War II, to talk about occupation - we could talk about, for once, the occupation of our territory. There are no armoured vehicles, no soldiers, but it is an occupation all the same and it weighs on people."

The parliamentary rules on immunity clearly state that immunity cannot be claimed when a member is found in the act of committing an offence and shall not prevent the European Parliament from exercising its right to waive the immunity of one of its members. However the party which claims to be the party of the people, UKIP, voted for Le Pen to retain her immunity from prosecution despite her actions falling outside of the remit of her immunity.

It is ironic that the party that campaigns on a daily basis to stop what it calls European interference in the United Kingdom feels that it is acceptable to vote to prevent a country from democratically pursuing criminal charges against one of its citizens. Now UKIP has also found itself on the same side as some rather undesirable political allies.

The British National Party called the vote a "stitch up" by the European Parliament. Reacting to the vote on Twitter, BNP leader and North West MEP Nick Griffin said: "#EU PC bigots vote to strip #MarineLePen of immunity from being charged for 'hate' for voicing concerns of millions on Islamic occupation.

"I am thankful that the vast majority of MEPs saw fit to allow the removal of Le Pen's immunity so that she can be prosecuted for her inflammatory remarks - MEPs are not above the law and UKIP should explain why the party that claims to speak on behalf of people believes that Le Pen should be treated differently just because she is an MEP.

We know that UKIP has defended its double standards by stating that members voted to keep Le Pen's immunity "because we believe that freedom of speech is sacrosanct". Clearly their hypocrisy knows no limits. They believe it is acceptable to oppose all European Union legislation, except when it helps their political bedfellows.

Arlene McCarthy MEP is a British member of the Socialists and Democrats group and sits on the Legal Affairs committee in the European Parliament

You can read the original Public Service Europe article here

 Posted: 5 Jul 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP Councillor Raided By Police

posted by: Noah James | on: Friday, 5 July 2013, 11:11


Matthew Smith

Matthew Smith

Norfolk police have seized computer equipment belonging to a UKIP Norfolk county councillor.

The computer was taken by Norfolk police after they executed a search warrant at the home of Matthew Smith, UKIP councillor for Gorleston St Andrew.

Smith is currently under a police investigation relating to an alleged forged signatures probe.

A Norfolk police spokesman said: “Police conducted a search warrant at a premises in Gorleston High Street on Friday, June 28 in relation to an ongoing investigation into potential electoral malpractice relating to the Great Yarmouth area.

“Our aim is to conduct a full, impartial and proportionate investigation into allegations, reported to us by the borough council, which centre around the use of forged signatures on nomination papers. Friday’s action forms part of the evidence-gathering process of this investigation.

“Inquiries continue and no arrests have been made in relation to this matter.”

Norfolk police began their investigations into suspected electoral malpractice after a complaint was made just before the council elections in May.

Jonathan Childs, also a UKIP councillor raised concerns that his nomination papers had been altered without his knowledge.

Matthew Smith, a prospective parliamentary candidate for Great Yarmouth is also being investigated by the Information Commissioner’s Office after allegations of data theft after Ormesby borough councillor Charles Reynolds lodged a complaint claiming Smith stole confidential data from the Conservatives and offered it to Labour.

 Posted: 5 Jul 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP MEPs back far-right leader Le Pen

posted by: James Bloodworth | on: Wednesday, 3 July 2013, 22:25


UKIP MEPs have voted against a move by the European Parliament to remove the immunity of French far-right leader and MEP Marine Le Pen after French prosecutors opened a case against her for comments she made about Muslims.

Ms Le Pen, leader of the National Front (FN), is accused by French prosecutors of incitement to hatred and discrimination after she compared Muslims praying in the streets to the Nazi occupation of France.

At her party’s conference in 2010 she said:

“For those who like to talk about World War II, to talk about occupation, we could talk about, for once, the occupation of our territory. There are no armoured vehicles, no soldiers, but it is an occupation all the same and it weighs on people.”

Under European Parliament rules, immunity covers MEPs for any opinions they express within the parliament. However the rules state that:

“immunity cannot be claimed when a member is found in the act of committing an offence and shall not prevent the European Parliament from exercising its right to waive the immunity of one of its members”.

The French chief prosecutor’s office in Lyon had requested that Ms Le Pen’s parliamentary immunity be removed so prosecutors could take action against her.

Yet despite Labour and Tory MEPs backing the move in a vote yesterday, UKIP MEPs voted against it.

Conservative MEP Sajjad Karim said it was “deeply revealing” that while “an overwhelming majority of MEPs voted for Le Pen to lose her immunity and face a criminal investigation into race hate charges, extremist MEPs and UKIP voted to protect Le Pen”.

Arlene McCarthy MEP (Labour Legal Affairs spokesperson) said she was “thankful that the vast majority of MEPs saw fit to allow the removal of Marine Le Pen’s immunity so that she can be prosecuted for her inflammatory and racist remarks”.

“Euro MPs are not above the law and UKIP should explain why the Party that claims to speak on behalf of people believes that Marine Le Pen should be treated differently just because she is an MEP,” she added.

The daughter of former NF leader Jea-Marie Le Pen, Ms Le Pen’s party won 17.9 per cent of the vote in the first round of the French presidential election last year.

A Ukip spokesman said the party’s MEPs voted to keep Le Pen’s immunity “because we believe that freedom of speech is sacrosant”.

“Immunity should not be lifted just because you don’t like the MEP’s politics,” a spokesperson said.

The original article can be read here on Left Foot Forward



 Posted: 3 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
More UKIP Xenophobia

posted by: Simon Cressy | on: Wednesday, 3 July 2013, 12:49


Paul Nuttall

Paul Nuttall

 

Not content with directing their bile towards Bulgarian and Romanian immigrants, UKIP have now discovered that they have a brand new target for the party to vent their spleen at.

Croatia became the 28th member of the European Union this month, just twenty years after the bloody civil war that saw Yugoslavia fragment.

UKIP lost no time in beginning their customary act of xenophobic scaremongering with deputy leader Paul Nuttall positively frothing at the mouth at the possibility of being able to point his finger at the next set of people to blame for the woes of the world. 

Nuttall, who is also a MEP for the North West region has given a warning about a "possible" influx of Croats into the UK looking for work.
Given the fact that Croats cannot officially work in the UK until 2020 the influx he predicts is some way off.But Nuttall isn't one to miss a political opportunity.

Nuttall said " We all know that there is already a massive problem with immigrants coming here and many disappear into the wood work having taken cash-in-hand jobs. How tempting for those entitled to travel here but not work to vanish in the same way."

He continued "In six months time residents from Romania and Bulgaria will have the right to work here and as well as the strain on jobs, housing and other services this will create there are also major concerns about organised crime gangs."

"Problems have already been reported about such gangs operating in London and as similar gangs operate in Croatia there must be fears they will also head our way"

Given that Croatia is a small country with a population of just over 4 million and has unemployment figures equal to those of the population of Milton Keynes it is unlikely that there would be a major interest in seeking employment in the UK since they traditionally gravitate towards countries such as Germany, Austria or Switzerland.

But Paul Nuttall never let the facts get in the way of a good story 

 Posted: 3 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
UKIP wants to charge NHS patients to skip waiting times

posted by: James Bloodworth | on: Wednesday, 3 July 2013, 12:21


UKIP leader Nigel Farage has endorsed an article by the party’s health spokesperson which calls for people to be allowed to pay to skip A&E waiting times.

Last week Farage tweeted an article by John Stanley, a surgeon and UKIP candidate, referring to Stanley as a “UKIP health spokesman”.

In the article Stanley argues that people requiring urgent treatment should be seen within two hours, whereas those requiring non-urgent treatment should be given the option of paying to avoid waiting.

“We should accept that if a triaging clinician feels we don’t need treating within two hours required for standard cases then we be either willing to pay or willing to wait longer so cases most deserving are treated best. People should pay a higher charge if they haven’t registered with a GP as being directed back to primary care avoids unnecessary A&E visits.”

Stanley added that under UKIP people who qualify for free prescriptions would be exempt from the flat fee – but only if they haven’t been drinking.

“The same exceptions as for the prescription charge could apply unless the patient was drunk and disorderly or incapable.”

Drunk and incapable? Sounds like one of Farage’s MEPs.

In summary, among other things UKIP would:

  • Scrap NHS 111

  • Charge those requiring A&E treatment who don’t need treating within two hours

  • Allow mutual providers, including GPs, to charge a flat fee to see non-emergency cases

  • Ensure people can pay upfront fees off over a period of time when registered with a GP

  • Refuse to discount fees for drunk patients.

    You can read the original Left Foot Forward blog here

 Posted: 3 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Nigel Farage: I won't buy an Oyster card, I don't want them spying on me

posted by: Rosa Silverman | on: Wednesday, 3 July 2013, 12:05


Nigel Farage. (Photo Getty)

Nigel Farage. (Photo Getty)

The UK Independence Party leader said he instead buys a daily ticket for travel on London’s transport network, although journeys cost more this way.

He said: “I won’t even buy an Oyster card because I don’t want people knowing where I am going. I buy a daily ticket.”

When it was pointed out to him that Oyster cards do not have to be registered in the owner’s name, he replied: “Well, you never know. They are tracking your movements, dear boy, they can.”

While some dismissed his concerns as paranoia, privacy campaigners agreed that Oyster data could be used to track user’s movements.

Heather Brooke, who has investigated privacy issues, told the London Evening Standard: “Increasingly, Oyster cards are tied to your credit card or other identifying material.

“It is difficult to have a blank Oyster card that is not linked to you.”

But Labour MP Stephen Pound said Mr Farage was displaying “an interesting level of paranoia”.

He suggested his Oyster data might reveal him to be “on the District Line to Barking, his natural constituency”.

Mr Farage has previously warned about the lack of privacy on social media, telling the BBC’s Question Time programme: “I think people have to be cautious when they’re using all forms of social media – cautious about what they say, about what they do.

“Do not think that whatever you say on Facebook is private. It isn’t.”

You can read the original Telegraph article here

 Posted: 3 Jul 2013 | There are 3 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Cheshire East leader attacks UKIP decision to welcome convicted criminal as councillor

posted by: Belinda Ryan | on: Monday, 1 July 2013, 22:40


Louise Bours

Louise Bours

The Tory leader of Cheshire East Council has attacked UKIP’s decision to welcome convicted criminal Brian Silvester as a councillor.

Cllr Michael Jones was astounded UKIP had accepted the former Conservative councillor, who represents the Willaston and Rope ward on Cheshire East.

“The Conservative group clearly has standards higher than UKIP,” said the Tory group leader.

Cllr Silvester was fined £45,000 and ordered to pay £22,000 costs at Chester Crown Court last October after pleading guilty to 11 charges of fire safety breaches at a building he rented out as bedsits in Shavington.

The court heard how tenants were terrified for their safety.

According to the fire service, escape in the event of a blaze would have been ‘almost impossible’.

Cllr Silvester this week announced he had joined the UK Independence Party.

Cllr Jones said: “Cllr Silvester resigned from the Conservative Party before he would have been asked to leave because he had a criminal record for putting members of the public’s lives at danger.”

He added: “It is regrettable UKIP have not done good enough research on this.”

UKIP’s Cheshire chairman Cllr Louise Bours replied: “This is a man who has served his community with great distinction for more than 30 years. We are all fallible and he made a mistake for which he held his hands up, apologised and paid a large fine. It was a regulatory matter and thankfully no one was hurt.

“Surely one mistake does not negate three decades of public service. If it did half the politicians sitting in Westminster would not be there!

“Legally Brian has done nothing to prohibit him from being a member of UKIP and we are happy to have him in our party.”

You can read the original Crewe Chronicle article here

 Posted: 1 Jul 2013 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments

Share on FacebookTweet this
Academics warn against UKIP anti-quango rhetoric

posted by: University of Sheffield | on: Monday, 1 July 2013, 21:26


A team of academics at the Universities of Sheffield and Birmingham are highlighting the danger of anti-quango rhetoric following UKIP’s response to the Chancellor’s spending review.

In response to the coalition’s proposed cuts, UKIP announced an intention to ‘save tens of billions...by culling the quangos, challenging foreign aid and holding fake charities to account’.

This builds upon previous criticism from UKIP that the Government could save £4 billion a month by cutting quangos. However, research from the team of academics shows that UKIP’s proposal is flawed.

Professor Matthew Flinders of the University of Sheffield’s Department of Politics asserted that politician’s anti-quango rhetoric is over-simplistic and rarely leads to far-reaching change.

He said: “Quangos are a vital form of Government which deliver and regulate a range of services. Whilst quango-bashing is a common pastime for politicians, in reality they rarely deliver substantive changes as most quangos are fulfilling essential functions. From DVLA, the BBC, Ordinance Survey and the Student Loans Company most people will have contact with and benefit from quangos”.

In addition the research team has questioned UKIP’s ability to deliver substantive savings from scrapping quangos.

Dr Katharine Dommett, also of the University of Sheffield's Department of Politics, said: “Whilst closing quangos sounds simple, it is far from straight-forward. Successive governments have attempted to deliver savings through quango reform but have achieved little. This is because whilst quangos are publically unpopular their functions remain important to the smooth running of the state. If a quango is closed, then central Government nearly always end up performing the task.”

Since 2010 the coalition Government have conducted their own extensive public bodies review, resulting in the closure of 130 bodies, and the merger of more than 150 bodies into fewer than 70. This has reportedly produced a saving of £2.6 billion. However, this figure has been publically disputed by the National Audit Office and Public Accounts Committee.

The research team have also discovered that many of the functions previously being conducted by abolished quangos are now being performed by Government departments, resulting in limited savings. For example, the National College for Leadership of Schools and Children’s services, Partnerships for Schools, the Training and Development Agency for Schools and the Young People’s Learning Agency have all been drawn back into the department as executive agencies, resulting in limited financial savings.

Yiu can read the original article here

 Posted: 1 Jul 2013 | There are 1 comments | make a comment/view comments