The Labour MP for Kensington has apologised after being accused of writing a “racist, hate-filled” article that labelled a black Tory London Assembly member a “token ghetto boy”.
Emma Dent Coad made the remark in a 2010 blog while Shaun Bailey, who was raised in Ladbroke Grove, was the 2010 Hammersmith prospective parliamentary candidate .
She claimed Mr Bailey had “stigmatised” the area he was born in by referring to it as a “ghetto”, but has come under fire since the blog came to light on Monday (November 13).
The MP, who caused one of the shocks of the 2017 General Elections when she won the Kensington constituency, said she had been repeating what other people had said and her comments were taken “the wrong way”.
She told BBC Radio London: “If he was offended by me repeating what other people have said then I do apologise.
“Clearly, I shouldn’t have repeated it. People have taken it the wrong way.”
In the controversial blog, Ms Dent Coad had written: “Who can say where this man will ever fit in, however hard he tries?
"One day he is the ‘token ghetto boy’ standing behind D Cameron, the next ‘looking interested’ beside G Osborne. Ever felt used?”
Mr Bailey called on the Labour Party to consider Ms Dent Coad’s position.
Writing before her apology, he said: “I am shocked and saddened by the hate-filled, racist article written by Labour MP Emma Dent Coad which has surfaced this afternoon.
“During my time in politics I have dealt with prejudice and attacks from hard-line groups, including the BNP, but not once have I been labelled a ‘token ghetto boy’.
“Her use of language should not be acceptable for an elected politician, particularly one representing minority groups in London, and she should be ashamed.
“As someone who was born into a poor family in Ladbroke Grove , I am proud of my charity work helping deprived community groups in the area Ms Dent Coad, who has a long history of public intimidation, now represents.
“She should publicly apologise for these latest slurs - not just to me but to the wider black community - and the Labour Party should consider her position.
“I am proud of where I am from and would certainly not use language like ghetto in a way to disparage the area I grew up in.”
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