Councillor: Complaints over ‘ anti- immigration’ retweets are ‘ witchhunt’
Town politician re- posted message by ex- EDL leader
A SECOND Solihull councillor has been suspended by the Conservatives after re- posting anti- immigration and antiMuslim comments on Twitter.
Solilhull councillor Margaret Bassett, who sits on a religious education committee, is at the centre of the controversy after allegedly re- posting several posts on Twitter.
They included one from former EDL leader Robinson and another tweet critical of child refugees coming into Britain.
The suspension comes as all sides of Solihull Council voted in support of a Green Party motion reaffirming their commitment to ‘ equality, diversity and inclusion’ and pledging ‘ stand up against and speak out against any form of discrimina- tion’. It follows the case of Councillor Jeff Potts, who represents nearby Knowle, who is currently under investigation by West Midlands Police after allegedly retweeting inflammatory antiMuslim posts.
He has been suspended by his own Conservative group.
But Councillor Bassett, a Conservative, defended the retweets, saying she wanted “to stimulate debate”.
“Some of these issues are so awful that people ought to know that these issues are being discussed,” she said.
“I do think it’s a political witchhunt. I am not anti- Muslim, anti- Jewish or anyone else.”
A spokeswoman for Solihull Council said: “A complaint has been received about Councillor Margaret Bassett and this has been passed on to the council’s Monitoring Officer to be dealt with under the Code of Conduct procedure.”
Last month, there were calls for Councillor Potts to resign after he re- tweeted comments made by other individuals such as: “Deport and repatriate all Muslims from the UK or watch terrorists kill innocent people for generations to come.”
He also retweeted: “You’ve clearly not experienced the Pakistani hospitality, having a daughter raped by men who think she’s ‘ white trash’.”
He was suspended by his own Conservative group after the controversy. The move means he can still attend meetings – but as an independent.
Solihull councillor Ken Hawkins also sparked controversy in the summer by retweeting a photograph of protesters calling for justice over the Grenfell fire tragedy, which left at least 80 dead. The former mayor then added the caption: “Lets get ourselves a hangin!”
He later apologised.
I do think it’s a political witchhunt. I am not anti- Muslim, anti- Jewish or anyone else.
COUN MARGARET BASSETT
Coun Margaret Bassett and, inset left, Coun Jeff Potts