UKIP’s top lawyers can’t gag the party’s two-faced, ugly truth

Nigel Farage paints UKIP as a free-thinking organisation untouched by the trappings of Westminster spin, so why have plans been made to use court injunctions to keep ‘bad stuff’ out of the public domain? And just how far is the people’s party prepared to go to conceal its ugly side from the public?

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Freedom of speech? Farage's gagging order will shut you up
Steven_george-hilley
Steven George-Hilley
On 31 December 2014 09:37

When a beaming Nigel Farage proudly unveiled his freshly printed poster depicting David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband ‘gagged,’ the political message was instantly clear.

In contrast to the Westminster elite who have poisoned the well of political debate and let down the public, Nigel Farage is different. He’s a man who is not afraid to speak up on issues like the EU and refuses to allow political correctness to stifle freedom of speech within his party.

It is against this backdrop that Nigel Farage’s flagrant hypocrisy and willingness to deceive the electorate must be scrutinised, with the disclosure of confidential party minutes from last year where contingency plans were made for gagging orders.

According to a report in The Mirror this morning, party officials are recorded in minutes from a national executive committee meeting in June 2013 declaring, “We will face some tough times and need to decide whether to take injunctions out or not.”

The leaked documents also make it clear that the party is desperately concealing its darker side from the public, “We need to ensure all of the bad stuff is kept out of the public domain,” one executive is reported to have said.

Given that we have already learned that UKIP candidates brand Chinese women as ‘chinky birds,’ accuse gay people of causing flooding and tell comedian Lenny Henry to go to emigrate to ‘a black country,’ one wonders what other skeletons there are in the closet?

Privately, party officials admit that it has been a very bad couple of months for the UKIP machine, following unwelcome sexual harassment and racism claims and a significant drop in poll ratings for the purple avengers.

The revelations that confidential minutes from the party’s most senior meetings have been deliberately leaked in a move designed to undermine the credentials of the party’s legal officer, Matthew Richardson, will increase the level of suspicion and distrust at the very top of the party.

Make no mistake, UKIP has always been a magnet for troublemakers and fantasists.

Many of the highly publicised names who publicly ‘defected’ to join Farage’s team are well-known for their ability to cause chaos of biblical proportions during brief and unsuccessful stints in the Tories.

These professional wind-up merchants are not such a problem when confined to the lower ranks of the party, but when they’re stalking Nigel Farage on photo shoots and sitting at the top table, UKIP has reason to be afraid, very afraid.

We can assume that the Richardson legal leak is the first shot across the bows in an impending war amongst UKIP’s senior team that has been bubbling under the surface for many months.

One thing’s for sure, the knives are well and truly out and UKIP’s top team must launch an investigation to find the source of the leak and take action immediately.

Failure to do so will ensure that Nigel Farage enters the 2015 election looking over his shoulder with suspicion, instead of marching forward with his broad, beaming smile. 

Steven George-Hilley is a director at the Parliament Street think tank and a Conservative Party activist. He is a Contributing Editor to The Commentator @StevenGeorgia

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