I have this morning sent this message to Tommy Robinson:
The two most electrifying speakers at the #SurvivorsFirst rally of child sexual abuse sufferers at Rochdale were both Scots.
Dave Sharp, one of the organisers, told how he had been raped, drugged, shut in coffins, hanged by the neck and trafficked to Ireland while at a Catholic boys’ residential school in Fife. After years of drug and alcohol abuse to numb the pain, he became a Christian, turned his life around and now seeks out and supports other victims of CSA through the organisation he founded, Seek And Find Everyone (SAFE).
I have heard Dave speak before. I was the more shocked when I heard Shazia Hobbs for the first time.
Shazia is the Glasgow-born daughter of a Pakistani immigrant father and a Scottish mother who was her father’s second wife. Brought up to go to mosque and, at 18, forced into marriage to a much older Muslim man who she met for the first time on her wedding night, she rebelled and left her Pakistani family and community to live amongst white Scottish Glaswegians.
Having seen the Pakistani Muslim community from the inside, she now speaks publicly about the physical and sexual abuse of women and children within it.
As she stood in the shadow of Rochdale’s renowned Victorian Gothic town hall with its massive clock tower, Shazia attacked Muslim female politicians Naz Shah, Labour MP for Bradford West, and former Tory party chairman Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, for complaining loudly about Islamophobia in the white community while being mute about the oppression of women and children in their own where, Shazia says, CSA and FGM are rife.
Truth hurts. Through her exposures she has upset some Muslims and their useful idiots on the Left, so she now has a panic button installed in her home and is under police protection. She lives in fear for her own safety but refuses to be silenced.
I admired her courage; it was a privilege to listen to her. Her speech was also a useful balance to the dominant Rochdale narrative about white English girls being raped by gangs of Pakistani Muslim men, for which the town has become notorious.
It was because of these infamous rape gangs that #SurvivorsFirst chose Rochdale for its first CSA survivors’ rally.
The #SurvivorsFirst movement is an umbrella body that comprises a number of grassroots CSA organisations such as SAFE, Shatterboys UK and Parents Against Grooming UK. It was launched in Hyde Park at the end of July where we heard heart-felt stories from sexually abused people who, with help from the organisations, had bravely moved on from seeing themselves as damaged ‘victims’ to identifying themselves as more hopeful ‘survivors’. The launch was an emotional experience.
On Saturday we marched through Rochdale town centre holding #SurvivorsFirst banners aloft. We stopped at the location of the notorious Smith Street toilets where boys in Council care in the 80s had been sexually exploited by paedophiles directly under the watch of Council child care officers. We threw roses into the River Roch in memory of abused children and those who have subsequently taken their own lives.
And we heard more compelling speeches from survivors and their help organisations.
UKIP was strongly represented. Katie Fanning from the NEC was everywhere chatting to survivors and putting photos up on Facebook. Members of UKIP Rochdale branch helped steward the rally. And I was welcomed onto the speakers’ platform as UKIP’s Families & Children spokesperson.
In my speech I insisted that, to help survivors get closure, rigorous justice should be both done and seen to be done. Those at senior level in large organisations like the BBC, the church and local authorities who have a duty of care towards children in their charge and who had deliberately turned a blind eye to CSA taking place, should be sacked, prosecuted and if appropriate jailed.
I also pledged UKIP would ensure that offending institutions would fund programmes of therapy, mentoring and medical help for their CSA victims, in order to help them recover from their trauma.
The commitments were well received and UKIP will be invited to the next rally. The organisers reckon that 200,000 people watched the event live on social media, which they reckon will help get the public behind their new movement.
The courage of the survivors in speaking up in public and working to get their lives back is impressive. They deserve UKIP’s full support.
Nigel was my hero.
I loved him for how, almost singlehandedly, he had rescued the country from the controlling clutches of Jean-Claude Junker and the power-mad dead-hands in Brussels.
I respected him for how, single-mindedly, he had toured the country for 20 years speaking against our membership of the EU. I first heard him in a Tottenham backstreet ten years ago before I joined UKIP. The meeting had been organised by Winston McKenzie, then UKIP’s Commonwealth spokesman, but it was a cold wet night and only 10 people attended. Nevertheless Nigel was charismatic, passionate and funny. I was impressed.
I admired him for how he was so committed to the cause that he rolled with the punches, took insults, opprobrium and debilitating ‘racist’ accusations on the chin, and still came back for more – usually smiling and with a pint in his hand.
I even defended him when he resigned as party leader immediately after the 2016 referendum, leaving the party bereft and adrift. “Nigel has given his all,” I pointed out to his UKIP critics. “He has earned a holiday and a break from politics.”
The first inkling that Nigel wanted to stay involved in UKIP internal affairs despite his resignation came when he agreed to be Henry Bolton’s political referee during the September 2017 party leadership election. I was David Kurten’s campaign manager and was frustrated that Nigel should give this huge and unfair boost to Henry, alone of all the candidates.
My jaw also dropped with disappointment when, in January this year, Nigel argued that there possibly should be a second referendum to stop the whining and whingeing of Remoaners like Nick Clegg and Tony Blair. It seemed like betrayal. After all UKIP’s hard work, Nigel was now wobbling under pressure from lightweight busted flushes Clegg and Blair. My hero’s halo was beginning to slip.
But the show-stopper came in February when Nigel again publicly backed the incompetent lothario Henry Bolton. Bolton’s antics and arrogance were destroying UKIP before our eyes, yet Nigel fatuously compared him to Jeremy Corbyn and said Bolton could be the reforming saviour of the party.
Fortunately members ignored him and at the Birmingham EGM the same month they voted for Bolton to pack his bags. Nigel’s nominee was sacked after just five ineffective and embarrassing months in the job.
The party, though, was left a laughing-stock and nearly bankrupt. And Nigel’s halo was hanging by a thread.
Without personal ambition and from an honourable sense of duty, Gerard Batten stepped into the breach and promptly raised enough money to save the party and force London Mayor Sadiq Khan to eat his spite-fuelled words. He appointed a new chairman and treasurer and new deputy leaders, and started to clear up Henry’s mess and steady the ship.
And as the party’s former Brexit spokesman, he ensured exiting the EU remained the party’s core issue and his personal priority.
But Gerard is also known as a proponent of free speech and a critic of Islam, although he will never countenance any form of Muslim-bashing.
In this context former Islamic extremist and founder of the Quilliam Foundation, Majid Naawaz, draws an important distinction between Muslimophobia (hating Muslims as people) which is not acceptable, and Islamophobia (hating Islam the religion) which is. It’s a distinction that is vital in a democracy, and one that I suspect Gerard strongly supports.
When Gerard tweeted recently that ‘Islam is a death cult’, his Twitter account was immediately suspended and his free speech curtailed. But it’s a valid if contentious view about Islam that ought to be open for free debate, not closed down.
And indeed, if Gerard had instead described Christianity or Communism as a death cult, nobody would have batted an eyelid. Read for instance the extraordinary abuse that celebrity atheist Richard Dawkins heaps on the Jewish and Christian God in his best-seller, ‘The God Delusion’- insults he repeats on stage and screen while chortling at his own cleverness. I’ve seen him.
And read the Winston Churchill and Ronald Reagan stinging critiques of Communism.
The blasphemy laws that protect Islam alone from criticism and that prevail in official circles and the media as well as on Twitter, have caught others in their net too. Lauren Southern was banned from the UK as a result of the adjectives she applied to Islam’s Allah – adjectives that are much milder than those Dawkins applies to Christianity’s God.
And when Tommy Robinson held up a Quran on Piers Morgan’s Good Morning Britain TV show and said it is a violent and accursed book – which is virtually exactly what Dawkins says about the Bible – Morgan went apoplectic, the media went into meltdown and the show was referred to Ofcom.
More recently Robinson was banned from Twitter too. Gerard decided therefore to join his ‘Day of Freedom’ protest outside Downing Street on 6th May to speak up for free speech and the right to criticise Islam freely as we do other religions and ideologies.
Robinson is no saint and certainly he has in the past strayed into Muslimophobia which is utterly unacceptable. Muslims are our fellow citizens and deserve respect like everyone else.
But the aim of the protest was right so Gerard spoke powerfully from the platform. He also spoke at last weekend’s massive (and global) #FreeTommy protest after Robinson was suddenly arrested, convicted and jailed all within five hours at Leeds Crown Court.
Some party members are wary of the UKIP association with Robinson and the apparent tilt of the party towards the free-speech Right. Jim Carver MEP quietly resigned. Other members have emailed Gerard their concerns and anxious senior colleagues have no doubt spoken to him in private. That’s the right route, and I have little doubt the leader will take on board what they say.
But Nigel does party allegiance differently. He has toured UKIP branches openly criticising the association with Robinson and objecting to any anti-Islam stance – views that were rapidly republished on social and old media .
Any private suggestions or quiet words of advice from the former leader to the current one? None. Instead it’s the Farage foghorn, sounded with the deliberate intention of stirring up party disunity.
Having nearly destroyed the party by foisting Henry Bolton on us, it looks like Nigel is having another go with his wrecking ball by publicly undermining the leader who rescued us from that disaster.
Yet he could instead do something really constructive and useful. Brexit is in crisis. He might follow the example of Gordon Brown during the 2014 Scottish Independence referendum. The former prime minister came out of political retirement, toured Scotland with a series of barnstorming speeches and, by various accounts, turned public opinion and saved the day. Nigel could do likewise for exiting the EU and we’d love him for it.
Meanwhile his halo now lies in the dust and my hero has made himself zero.
If Nigel cannot show some loyalty to the party and its present leader, he should renounce his party membership and butt out.
“If the law supposes that,” said Mr. Bumble, squeezing his hat emphatically in both hands, “the law is an ass – an idiot.”
Mr Bumble’s dismissal of the legal system in Charles Dickens’ story of Oliver Twist came immediately to mind – but with the word ‘law’ amended to ‘judge’ – when I read last week that Britain’s most senior family court judge has argued that we should celebrate the demise of the traditional family unit and the growth of alternative domestic arrangements.
Indeed, “callously asinine” and “heartlessly idiotic” are more accurate descriptions of the outspoken judge’s views.
Sir James Munby is not the first of the UK’s American-style politicised judges who in recent years have jettisoned judicial neutrality in favour of further promoting the prevailing liberal agenda.
Neither is he the first to reject the intact two-parent family and to celebrate new flexible forms of ‘family’ that have developed – or been imported – over the past half-century.
The modern family has been defined as ‘a group of people who share a fridge’. Certainly an array of relationships is now on offer as ‘family’ – single parents, gay couples, threesomes (or ‘thruples’), temporary marriages, open and monogamish marriages, group and polygamous marriages. In California unsurprisingly, a man married his dog.
The government helped the decline of traditional marriage when it announced during the 2013 gay marriage debate that adultery would no longer be grounds for divorce. Undermining the traditional promise of faithfulness ‘till death do us part’, Baroness Stowell told the House of Lords in effect that modern couples are welcome to ignore their marriage vows and to get out and play the field. Legally, adultery is not now an issue.
But research confirms what common sense indicates, that on average children do best – socially, educationally, and health-wise – when they are nurtured by both birth parents who are committed to each other by marriage. This is not to say that single parents, for instance, cannot do a good job; after WW2 many widows were forced to bring up their children alone.
But children flourish best where there is stability, commitment and the unique love-bond that only both birth parents can give. When parents split, and when new partners are introduced into the home, the adverse impact on children’s sense of security and wellbeing is immense.
Tellingly, a previous family court judge has come to exactly the opposite conclusions to Sir James, and was virtually forced off the judges’ bench for saying so:
Sir Paul Coleridge served on the Family Division bench for fourteen years, from where day by day he saw the misery of fractured families and broken relationships. Instead of celebrating the resulting new forms of family, he twice spoke out publicly about the tragic decline of marriage, the peripheral relevance of same-sex marriage and the scourge of family breakdown; and in 2013 he was disciplined by the Judicial Conduct Office for action “incompatible with his judicial responsibilities”.
He promptly resigned and set up the Marriage Foundation to tackle this “national tragedy” by promoting long-lasting stable relationships within marriage. The organisation now has growing influence as it publishes reliable research into the personal and social cost of fracturing families and the benefits of long-term stable marriages.
Sir James of course will not be disciplined by the JCO because, unlike Sir Paul, he speaks slickly into the prevailing politically-correct anti-marriage zeitgeist.
But two opposite-sex married parents who prioritise their children’s wellbeing has, for good reason, been the healthy norm for flourishing families and the bedrock of a successful society for millennia, at least in Britain.
If we listen to Sir James, children will continue to suffer and society will continue its descent into selfish, isolated and dystopian individualism.
If we listen to Sir Paul, we can rescue wholesome family life and produce healthy nurturing social relationships, through which the next and succeeding generations will prosper.
Guess which judge issues the better judgement…
This post was first published by Kipper Central on 7th June
It was a filthy wet evening in Rochdale.
I was concerned, as I had arranged for two key people in the growing grassroots anti-grooming movement to meet and to go out on patrol around the town centre.
One of them is Billy Howarth, Rochdale born and bred, a working class man and proud of it. When he discovered that his young daughter was being groomed and the authorities failed to act, he went ballistic. If they wouldn’t do something to protect his daughter and girls like her, he would; he promptly set up Parents Against Grooming UK.
One of PAGUK’s activities is to run parent patrols around the town to warn children and young teenagers about the sexual abusers that inhabit public places like the bus station. As I saw when he took me out on patrol before Christmas, he knows everyone in the town, has a good relationship with the youngsters, and on their behalf has become a sharp thorn in the side of authorities and perpetrators alike.
For instance former Islamic preacher Abdul Rauf is one of the nine infamous Rochdale groomers who were convicted in 2012. He has since been released from prison back into the community. When Billy saw Rauf waiting in a car outside a local school recently – the same school that two of Rauf’s victims had attended – he went up to the car, verbally accosted him, filmed him and forced him to move on.
The other is Mohan Singh, the formidable founder of the Sikh Awareness Society, which he set up to counter the grooming of Sikh girls who, like the English victims, are despised kuffar (non-believers) to the Muslim paedophiles. Mohan’s work was the subject of a BBC Inside Out documentary: “The hidden scandal of sexual grooming of young Sikh girls by Muslim men.” You can view it here.
I first met Mohan earlier this year at his Birmingham home. I straight away realised that he sees the grooming gang atrocities with a penetrating clarity. “It’s an Islamic issue that’s occurring on an industrial scale across the country,” he told me. “Politically-correct authorities won’t deal with it properly until middle England wakes up and forces them to.”
With his long beard, orange turban, chola (Sikh warrior dress) and kirpan (Sikh ceremonial knife), I knew Mohan would cut a colourful and imposing figure out on parent patrol around the grey wet streets of Rochdale. The purpose of the patrols is educational and peaceful so there is almost never trouble. But also, loitering paedophiles know not to mess with Billy. Neither, I knew, would they mess with Mohan.
I introduced the two men to each other in the car park of Rochdale’s world-renowned Victorian Gothic town hall under its massive clock tower. It was a first meeting between these key activists that should strengthen the growing grassroots anti-grooming movement and result in some fruitful cooperation.
As we sheltered from the sheeting rain in a nearby hostelry, others joined us: John Clynch from the Democratic Football Lads Alliance; Dan Wolstencroft from Shatter Boys UK, one of the few organisations that supports male sexual abuse survivors; Tricky Powell from the pioneering group Women Against Grooming; and Rob Mudd and Tommy Barnes from UKIP Rochdale branch who recently ran a hard-hitting local election campaign over Labour’s responsibility for the grooming scandal.
Vlogger Phil Davies, aka Red Pill Phil, came along to film the event too.
It was a useful gathering of grassroots anti-grooming groups; contacts were made and plans were laid for future initiatives together.
In the event, the foul weather was so bad that the street patrol itself was a damp squib. We set off around Rochdale’s empty streets, got wet, but saw few people.
But overall, participants were encouraged. “At last people are seeing through the political correctness that has hidden the grooming gang threat,” said UKIP’s Rob Mudd. “Parents and grandparents are increasingly worried about the safety of their children, but there’s hope for them in the growing grassroots movement here in Rochdale and across the country.”
This article was first published on 29th May by Kipper Central
The courageous parents of little Alfie, Tom Ward and Kate James, have discovered the totalitarian fact that their child belongs first to the State.
Silly us. We thought that we live in a democracy where the government and its minsters (note the word: to minister means ‘to support’, ‘to help’ or ‘to care for’) are elected by the people for the people; where public servants are employed to, er, serve the public; and where the publicly-funded State institutions like the Armed Services and the National Health Service are there to – well, the name is on the tin.
But no longer: in 2018 Britain the idiots run the asylum and the servants are now the masters.
It’s been a long time coming. Since WW2 the tentacles of the State have spread ever wider and deeper so that now, whatever the problem, the knee-jerk response is to call on the government to solve it and pay for it.
So when Labour MP Carolyn Harris tragically lost her eight year old son and found the burial expenses too demanding for her domestic budget, she naturally turned to the prime minister for help. Mrs May, being a compassionate if childless woman, opened her bottomless purse of public money to set up the Children’s Funeral Fund (CFF). Now no grieving parents – no matter how wealthy – will ever again have to pay to bury their child.
“In the raw pain of immediate loss, it cannot be right that grieving parents should have to worry about how to meet the funeral costs for a child they hoped to see grow into adulthood,” explained Tory Mrs May empathetically.
“This is a simple piece of dignity for bereaved families across the country,” agreed Jeremy Corbyn for Labour, offering words of care and compassion.
As a result the State further increases its involvement in the most unifying and private areas of family life. Whereas in an earlier age a wider circle of grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins would have rallied round, made sacrifices and together fulfilled family responsibilities towards the grieving parents, they no longer have to.
The government has taken over a natural function of the family, the fairy godmother in Downing Street has given away more tax-payers’ funds, and Uncle Bill and Aunt Mavis are free to put down the deposit on their flyaway holiday or new car.
But State generosity with our cash comes at a democratic price – and here’s the rub. State involvement invariably brings with it the power to regulate our decisions and control our lives. To qualify for the CFF grant, grieving parents are required to use only permitted funeral directors and proper places and forms of burial or cremation.
It cannot be otherwise; it is good government to direct and hold to account those who receive public funds.
But, at £10 million pay-out a year, the CFF is merely a gnat bite to both government and society.
The National Health Service is a different being and on a different planet. Although born through the same spirit of compassion and service – Lord Soper called the 1946 formation of the NHS “the noblest domestic act of government in the 20th century and one of the most transparently Christian political acts in British history”- and with the same need to demonstrate good government, it has now grown into a massive £125 billion a year State behemoth whose reach extends into all areas of society.
And as a result bureaucracy has taken over from compassion, efficiency of management has replaced vocation of service, and through the NHS there has been dramatic expansion in the State’s power to regulate our personal decisions and control our family lives.
Which is what baby Alfie’s dad and mum, Tom Ward and Kate James, discovered when they passed their sick baby into the arms of the Alder Hey Children’s Hospital & NHS Foundation Trust. The hospital management decided they knew what was best for the little boy – to let him die – so they closed ranks, exercised their court-backed authority and refused to release the child back to his desperate parents.
The private affair became a public battle as Tom, Kate and their legal advisers faced up to the full power of the State – the legal system as well as the hospital authorities – in front of local supporters and global media alike.
The Pope appealed on their behalf, the Italian government granted citizenship to Alfie, and a fully-equipped air ambulance was on stand-by to fly the lad to reputable hospitals in Rome or Genoa.
But the servants are the masters now. The hospital management morphed into a monster, refused under any circumstances to grant the parents’ wishes and did not consider themselves obliged to publicly explain their reasons further than claiming a vague “best interests of the child”.
Alfie manifestly belonged to the State.
In the end a crushed and defeated Tom and Kate threw in the towel. They appealed for supporters outside the hospital to go home and said they would instead work with the hospital team “to provide our boy with the dignity and comfort he needs.”
Tragically, Alfie has now passed away. Our hearts go out to Tom and Kate as they grieve their loss in private.
Ironically, to add insult to injury, the State will now give them cash for their baby’s burial by way of the newly-created Children’s Funeral Fund.
A few days ago former Steven Woolfe MEP launched an ‘Alfie’s Law’ initiative through which parents like Tom and Kate will be able to choose an independent qualified advocate to act on their behalf in order to correct the power imbalance between themselves and the State.
I understand too that, in the light of the similar Ashya King and Charlie Gard cases, Lord Alton is working on a comparable initiative in the House of Lords.
Tom and Kate have lost their battle with the authorities, but their heroic action must serve as a wake-up call to parents and to democrats everywhere.
It’s time to grab back our rights from an increasingly totalitarian State, and UKIP must be at the front of the fight.
This article was first published on 3rd May by UKIP Daily
I have recently been appointed UKIP’s first spokesperson for Families & Children and in this capacity I have been spending time in Rochdale where one of the most infamous grooming gang scandals took place. I wrote the article below for Kipper Central this week:
It is a national catastrophe.
Predominantly Pakistani Muslim grooming gangs have flourished for decades up and down the country, while politically correct and self-interested Labour councils have turned a blind eye.
Thousands of young English girls have been groomed, raped, abused and trafficked as sex slaves, thanks to the Labour Party and its crime of omission.
Some Sikh girls and English boys too have had their lives wrecked by the groomers, while Labour looked the other way.
It’s right to hold Jeremy Corbyn’s party directly responsible. Rochdale, Rotherham, Oxford, Bradford, Keighley, Leicester, Telford, Oldham, Blackburn, Newcastle, Leeds, Ipswich, Birmingham, Slough, Blackpool, Preston, Hartlepool – these towns and others have two things in common:
First, every one of the town halls is run by Labour. And second, every one of these towns has provided public places – streets, shopping malls, school gates, curry houses, cab offices, car parks, even a car wash – for grooming gangs to operate freely, openly and with impunity.
It’s time to hold the Labour Party to account. Corrupted by political correctness so that it refused to acknowledge the abuse committed by members of ethnic and religious minority communities; and unwilling to upset these communities because of the volunteers, voting power and political support they supply to the party, Labour’s track record on the issue is shameful.
I have been investigating street grooming gangs for months and I first visited Billy Howarth, the founder of Rochdale’s Parents Against Grooming (PAGUK), in the autumn. As he showed me around the town centre where grooming takes place and told me about the corrupt Labour-dominated local council, I realised the issue is as much political as criminal. The gangs abused the girls because they knew the authorities would do nothing.
Whistle-blower Sara Rowbotham, who ran a sexual health centre for young people in Rochdale from 2004 until she was sacked in 2014, sent exact details of the street grooming to every relevant authority and agency in the town, but they sat on their hands.
More recently I met with the chairman of UKIP’s Rochdale branch, Lee Seville, and his committee. I took along leaders of both the Veterans Against Terrorism (VAT) and the Democratic Football Lads Alliance (DFLA) who have expressed strong support for UKIP.
Together we drew up battle plans to take on the all-powerful Rochdale Labour party in the local elections on 3rd May in order to expose their failure to protect vulnerable girls.
The campaign is to be launched this Thursday 12th April. The DFLA are organising a peaceful protest march through Rochdale town centre, meeting at the Old Cricket Ground, Dane Street, OL12 6XT (by Asda Superstore) at 1.00pm and finishing at the old Town Hall opposite the police station on The Esplanade, OL16 1LB.
During the march we will be handing out UKIP campaign leaflets about the grooming gang scandal in the town. As well as DFLA and VAT platform speakers, UKIP leader Gerard Batten will address the marchers and the attending media. So too will branch chairman Lee Seville. I will be speaking as UKIP’s Families and Children spokesman.
When the rally is over, we will move to UKIP’s target wards and deliver UKIP leaflets through as many doors as possible.
All UKIP members are welcome to join us to hear Gerard speak, and to support UKIP Rochdale in this David-and-Goliath battle.
We’ve got the cause. We’re starting the campaign. Now let’s make Labour pay.
My post here was first published on UKIP Daily:
One unfortunate by-product of Rotherham Labour MPs’ successful defamation case against UKIP’s Yorkshire MEP Jane Collins is that some members of our party are now less willing to tackle the national grooming gang scandal – the sexual exploitation and abuse of mainly young white English girls by mostly older Pakistani-heritage Muslim men.
Mind you, there always have been senior party members who insist that UKIP should not touch the issue. When I started investigating grooming gang activities in Hartlepool and Teesside, I was informed that UKIP’s former General Secretary and North East MEP Jonathan Arnott would not engage with the problem because it would be ‘anti-Muslim’ or ‘racist’ to do so.
This is the same sickening politically-correct excuse that the old parties and local authorities use. It has allowed the abuse of thousands of young girls – over 1,400 in Rotherham alone. And it was revealed just last week that men from Pakistani, Bangladeshi and other Muslim backgrounds have openly abused “with arrogant persistence” over 700 girls in Mr Arnott’s own constituency of North East England.
It’s a total disappointment that UKIP’s elected representative for the area decided to pass by on the other side over this problem. We can be pleased he’s now left the party.
But Jane Collins is made of sterner stuff and was absolutely right to expose Labour’s culpability in the Rotherham scandal. Whistle-blower Jayne Senior’s book ‘Broken and Betrayed’, amongst others, provides clear evidence that the Labour-run local authority not only looked the other way but also was responsible for covering up the abuse.
The problem is that Jane Collins chose the wrong Labour target. Instead of attacking the local authority she instead cited the three Rotherham Labour MPs one of whom, Sarah Champion, has in fact campaigned hard since her election in 2012 to protect the girls and expose the scandal. Ms Champion was even sacked from Jeremy Corbyn’s front bench for publicly identifying the rapists as Pakistani men and the victims as white girls. It is therefore no surprise that Jane Collins lost the libel case.
But the issue remains and girls are still being abused, and the evidence is that this phenomenon has occurred particularly in Labour fiefdoms like Rochdale, Oldham, Bradford, Blackburn, Derby, Leicester, Oxford, Newcastle – and of course Rotherham.
The destructive effect of Labour’s PC attitudes is horribly illustrated by the devastation caused to the lives of over 1,400 young girls in Rotherham. This is what the government’s independent Casey Review says (p160):
“The case of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham was a catastrophic example of authorities turning a blind eye to harm in order to avoid the need to confront a particular community. The town saw upwards of 1,400 children sexually exploited over more than a decade; groomed by predominantly Pakistani-heritage men offering drugs, alcohol and attention followed by sexual abuse and mental and physical coercion.
“Despite the widespread knowledge of this practice across the local authority, statutory partnerships and many local residents, those with the power to act chose to defend ‘community cohesion’ and political correctness over the vulnerable children in their care. Destroying evidence of perpetrator ethnicity and shutting down services was preferable to confronting criminals from a minority ethnic community; such was their fear of offending local cultural sensitivities.”
UKIP is the only national party that opposes political correctness, combats the widespread refusal to see and name reality as it really is, and refuses to play the PC game. We did it over Brexit. We especially did it over mass immigration. Unilaterally we changed the political agenda and reset the political debate; this was because to UKIP it is more important to tell the truth than to avoid offending someone’s feelings or sensibilities.
This doesn’t make us popular with the political class or with some vocal minorities on the Left, but it does make us a radical anti-establishment party that ordinary people like and support.
We now have the electoral opportunity and moral responsibility to enter the fray over the issue. For the sake of the girls and their families who still suffer, we must campaign to terminate Labour Party domination of grooming gang towns across the North and Midlands, and put an end to their harmful political correctness.
Local elections on 3rd May are less than nine weeks away. Let’s start there.
Tablighi Jamaat (TJ) must be punch-drunk. The Islamic group that wishes to build a mega-mosque at the Riverine Centre in West Ham close to the London Olympic stadium – now home of West Ham United Football Club – has endured so many defeats and blows to the head that its judgement has become suspect.
Certainly, like infamous former boxing champion, rapist, law-breaker and Muslim convert Mike Tyson, TJ has shed-loads of money to burn; it has lashed out hundreds of thousands of pounds over the years on court fees, lawyers’ costs, legal expenses and advisers’ bills.
Last month I attended the High Court in The Strand where the group was once again trying to stop Newham Council from closing their illegal temporary Markaz (mosque) called Masjid-e-Ilyas on the West Ham site, and bulldozing the buildings.
But whereas TJ previously had fielded heavyweight teams of top QCs, prominent advisors and excellent professional back-up, this time their lawyers refused to appear in court on their behalf as, they claimed apparently, they hadn’t been given enough time to prepare. Instead TJ sent a lone spokesman to make their case, a pleasant but legally lightweight member of the Islamic group, Moiz-ur-Rahman.
Like a disorientated prize-fighter, Mr Rahman staggered all over the legal canvas of planning applications, regulations, injunctions, enforcement notices and deeds of undertakings without landing a single valid blow on Newham Council. It was embarrassing to watch. The only effective point he made was the non-legal one that the Muslim community would suffer hardship if the Markaz was demolished; he told the court ominously that there is the possibility of the return of street protests by Muslim-run Newham People’s Alliance that we had last seen in 2013.
On the other hand Douglas Edwards QC, Newham Council’s silk, was on his toes and ruthless in punching and jabbing at TJ’s baleful catalogue of criminal offences and unlawful activities at the site. He soon had them on the ropes: they’d blatantly broken binding pledges, breached planning controls and built unauthorised structures. Newham Council had tried to accommodate them but TJ simply ignored planning protocols and carried on their illegal activities regardless.
The decision when it came was inevitable. Judge Walden-Smith told the mosque trustees that they had continued to procrastinate, their activities at the site were unlawful, the mosque had been in breach of planning control from the outset and that breaching an enforcement notice was a criminal offence. Having thereby shredded TJ’s reputation and exposed their dishonesty and lack of probity, she bluntly refused their application to suspend the demolition. It was a knock-out blow.
The Times and the Guardian carried reports, the former under the dramatic if misleading headline “Judge orders demolition of Abbey Mills mosque in Stratford, east London”: in fact the judge had, rather, refused to further delay Newham Council’s right to have the mosque demolished.
Continuing international interest in the mega-mosque issue was confirmed by the full-time attendance in court of a reporter from Pakistan’s The Dawn newspaper, who interviewed me and gave the case detailed and extensive coverage.
TJ are now out for the count as this is the end of the UK’s legal road for the trustees. They can make no more appeals and they have to demolish the illegal mosque buildings and vacate the site.
However, the trustees suddenly surprised the court by announcing that they are moving the fight to Strasbourg: on 5th January they had filed an application to the European Court of Human Rights for a restraining order. Planning lawyers advise that this is unlikely to succeed and the demolition will have to go ahead anyway. Others say the ECtHR is unpredictable.
Whatever, as always, it ain’t over ’til its over.
Tomorrow the National Executive Committee of UKIP meets to discuss what to do about the party leader, Henry Bolton, whose personal affairs have been on national and social media relentlessly for the past three weeks. Unilaterally Bolton has brought to party into crisis with officers resigning and members apparently leaving in droves, yet he adamantly refuses to fall on his sword.
My article below was first published three days ago on Kipper Central:
Most UKIP members were willing to give Henry Bolton a chance.
He was the unknown and surprise victor in the party leadership election last September. He had come from nowhere, had few political policies and had campaigned almost entirely on his military and police track record and his own character. “Trust me, I will serve to lead,” he said regularly in hustings, quoting the motto of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.
He may have the charisma of Herman van Rompuy and the appearance of a bank manager but could he be the person to stabilise and professionalise the troubled UKIP ship? Most were willing to give him time and space to show what he could deliver.
As autumn turned to winter and little seemed to be happening, anxious enquiries to his office were met with calm assurances from his staff that he was concentrating on internal party reorganisation. But come the new year, we were told, Henry would be out there doing the business, promoting new policies, setting the agenda and putting UKIP back on the political map.
The new year broke, and this week Henry was indeed interviewed for six minutes on the BBC’s national flagship prime-time agenda-setting Radio 4 programme ‘Today’. In political terms this was striking gold.
But for almost the entire interview Henry talked about himself, his marriage, his love life, his critics and his determination to continue in the job. It was all about Henry. He said nothing about the party, UKIP policies, the political situation or the all-important local elections in May.
It was an excruciating interview that resulted directly from a foolishness and selfishness that is worthy of a spotty hormonal teenage boy, not a mature and responsible adult man.
The whole sordid saga that includes betrayal, abandonment, racism and intimidation has been chronicled in detail – usually with salacious photos – by national and social media. Yet to date Henry has offered no apology, no expression of regret and definitely no recognition of how badly he has damaged the party.
And there is more.
On 6th January I published an article about how Henry had broken his word over pledges amongst other things.
This now seems prescient. Two days later on 8th January party chairman Paul Oakden wrote to all party members about NEC deliberations regarding “press coverage of our leader Henry Bolton”. The NEC had decided to discuss the matter at a special meeting ten days’ later and, Paul wrote, “No further comment will be made on this issue by the central party or any NEC member until that meeting has concluded.”
48 hours later, to the fury of other NEC members, Henry reneged on the agreement, broke the vow of silence and agreed to be interviewed by the political website Westmonster. He told them he would not be quitting and blamed “bitter opponents” for his troubles. None of it was his fault of course.
Clearly, for Henry, pledges, agreements and taking responsibility for his actions are like his women: to be dumped at will and as it suits his own selfish interests.
“I’ll serve to lead,” he had claimed, yet he neither serves UKIP’s interests nor shows leadership qualities of honesty and responsibility.
Last summer UKIP was in the doldrums: now, thanks to Henry, it is a dead man dying. So we need to bite the bullet and do the right thing. Cutting out a cancer is painful and costly, but the operation is necessary to try to restore the body’s health and former vigour.
And week is a long time in politics; who knows what new opportunities the coming months may offer the party? Tides turn, stuff happens, pollsters get it wrong and pundits make false predictions. Politics is unsettled and fluid today. Further, the country and Brexit still need UKIP.
In 1940, former cabinet minister Leo Amery castigated the inept Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain for his incompetent conduct of the war. Speaking in the House of Commons, Amery repeated Oliver Cromwell’s 1653 rebuke for the corrupt and ineffectual Long Parliament: Amery told Chamberlain, “Depart, and let us have done with you. Go!”
Amery’s speech led to Chamberlain’s immediate resignation and the appointment of the formidable but wayward Winston Churchill in his place. The result, as they say, is history.
At its meeting on Sunday the NEC too should say the same to Henry Bolton: Depart, and let us have done with you. Go!
We certainly can do no worse than at present and we might, just might, do a whole lot better.