Observations made at a Black History Month event have led to accusations of “pure racism” against a Labour council leader and parliamentary candidate.
Darren Rodwell, the mayor of Barking and Dagenham, is going to be looked at after entering the stage with a Black History Month flag and a kufi, a traditional cap worn in certain regions of Africa.
He said to the crowd after being introduced: “You could have known that I’ve got the worst tan conceivable for a black guy.
“But I have the enthusiasm of the African and Caribbean beat,” you say.
“I used to do swing dancing, since I used to adore jiggling around,” the council leader said.
Rodwell has been accused of racism for the incendiary remarks and is now on the short list to succeed Margaret Hodge as the Labour MP for Barking.
According to The Telegraph, a formal complaint about the statements was lodged, and there was outrage among the party base in East London’s heavily Labour neighborhood.
Local residents are outraged and denouncing what they perceive to be Darren Rodwell’s overt prejudice, according to a source.
The Labour Party did not explicitly address Rodwell’s remarks, but did say that they will be looked at.
The Labour Party takes all complaints very seriously, and any necessary disciplinary action is done after a thorough investigation is conducted in accordance with our rules and procedures, according to a party spokeswoman.
Since 2014, Darren Rodwell has served as the council’s leader, and for the most of that period, Labour has controlled all of the council’s seats.
He is now seen to be the favorite to succeed Dame Margaret Hodge as the MP for Barking when she resigns at the next election after serving in the position for over 30 years.