Police investigate Tory councillor after comments broadcast on YouTube

The Leicester Mercury reports:

Police are investigating remarks made by a councillor at a meeting to discuss plans for a travellers’ site.

Robert Fraser, county councillor for Groby and Ratby, said Romanians would “stick a knife in you as soon as look at you”, and that some Europeans “make the Irish look like complete amateurs”.

Travellers’ spokesman, Alfred Kefford, said he was outraged by the Conservative councillor’s “racist” comments.

He heard them after footage of the meeting was posted on video website YouTube. He complained to the police.

Today, Coun Fraser, a former county council member for equality, apologised and said he regretted the “spur-of-the-moment” remarks…

Mr Kefford, chairman of the Leicester Gipsy Council Liaison Group, said: “I’m appalled, shocked and disgusted at these comments.

“They are racist. A lot of damage has been done and seeing these comments on YouTube, of all places, is very, very hurtful.

“If they were directed at any other ethnic group, there would be a public outcry.

“We are trying hard to break down barriers between the gipsy community and the public, and things like this certainly do not help.

Conservative MP Stephen Dorrell, who was also at the meeting, has denied the comments were racist:

I don’t think it’s racist because I don’t think that Romanians are a race of people. The comments are anti-Romanian.

He also said:

I don’t think what he said should necessarily lead to his resignation, but his words were extremely unwise and plain wrong in my view.

Read more by or more about , or .
This entry was posted in News.
Advert

3 Comments

  • There is a lot of confusion about ‘race’, which if the quote from Stephen Dorrell is correct he seems to share. In the dim and distant days when I studied anthropology it was generally accepted that there were only five racial groups: any sub-groups would be what we today tend to refer to as ethnic groups. Thus the Roma are not a race, the Jews are not a race, Arabs are not a race, etc. But to suggest, as Stephen Dorrell does, apparently, that you cannot therefore be racist by making derogatory remarks about ethnic groups seems to me to be employing language in an overly-pedantic way.

  • The word Roma doesnt exist! They are gipsies! Dont confuse Roma and Romanians!

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?

Advert



Recent Comments

  • neil James sandison
    The problem is the development lobby their friends in the Conservative party argue for more land for housing without specifying what type of housing doing their...
  • Peter Martin
    @ Joe, "Aviation is something of a side issue. It accounts for 2.5% of global CO2 emissions." Not quite so minor as your 2.5% figure might sugg...
  • Matt Wardman
    Profound apologies. I fouled up an apostrophe in that comment. Unforgiveable....
  • Matt Wardman
    As an inhabitant of the Red Wall, I am waiting to see what happens. IMO the next election (and perhaps the one after that) in most red wall areas remains th...
  • Robert Hale
    Yes, it's true other species are indeed in trouble. However it's us, generally, who are the source of those troubles. So it's a choice on the one hand of taki...