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Tory Donor Faces Backlash for Racially Tinged Comments Against MP Diane Abbott

Published March 13, 2024
2 months ago

Recent revelations concerning controversial comments made by Frank Hester, the UK Conservative Party's top donor, have sparked a political firestorm with opposition parties calling for action. Hester, who has donated a staggering £10 million to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's party, is reported to have made disparaging remarks against Diane Abbott, the first Black female MP in UK Parliament, saying that seeing her made him want to "hate all Black women."

The comments, dating back to 2019 but gaining public attention now, were part of a conversation where Hester also mentioned Abbott should be "shot," according to The Guardian newspaper. This has prompted the Labour Party, currently in opposition, to pressure the Conservatives into returning the substantial financial contribution.

Despite Hester's attempt to clarify that his remarks were made in a private setting and were not driven by racial or gender bias, the Labour Party is unconvinced. Labour leader Keir Starmer called the apology insincere and accused the remarks of being inherently racist and misogynistic.

Diane Abbott, who now sits as an independent, voiced her concern over the impact such public comments could have on her safety, especially considering her visibility and frequent use of public transport in the absence of a car. The allegations have not only cast a shadow on Hester but also reignited concerns about how the Conservative Party addresses issues of racism within its ranks.

This new episode of controversy follows previous critiques, including the suspension of former party chairperson Lee Anderson for his alleged Islamophobic remarks regarding London's Mayor Sadiq Khan, and the reluctance of Conservative figures to directly address or condemn such statements.

Amid Labour's call to action and the media scrutiny, PM Rishi Sunak faces mounting pressure to disassociate from the donor's tainted contributions and reaffirm his party's stance against racism. With clarity and accountability at stake, the Conservative Party must navigate the fallout of this scandal and its implications for its moral and political integrity.

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