Godfrey Bloom, the UK Independent Party (UKIP) politician who referred to countries like Nigeria that receive aid from Britain as “bongo bongo land” has stepped down from being a UKIP member of the European parliament.
The implication of his decision is that he would remain a member of the European parliament as an independent and remain a UKIP member as well. He added that he had “felt for some time” the party was no longer for him.
He would not be standing as a UKIP candidate at the next round of European elections and UKIP leader, Nigel Farage, has said he would be expected to give support to the candidate who will be replacing him.
His latest gaffe was committed during a party meeting when he referred to some women present at the meeting as sluts.
In his defence, he claimed he had only meant the statement as a joke. Claiming he had only used the word as it was originally meant to be used – to refer to women who were untidy
UKIP leader, Nigel Farage, insisted nothing Mr Bloom had said was in malice and he did not want to see his colleague “hounded out of the party”.
The gaffe prone politician had been removed from his position as the party whip last week – suspending him from taking part in formal party business – after a recording of him calling a group of UKIP female politicians who did not clean behind their fridges, “sluts”.
Nigel Farage also noted that Godfrey Bloom’s statement had “overshadowed” UKIP’s annual conference.
“All the things Godfrey has said have not been meant in malice but they have all been tremendous distractions from the main messages UKIP is trying to push out,” he said.
“Nearly everything he has said has been meant as a joke.”
When confronted about UKIP campaign literature which allegedly featured no non-white faces, the MEP accused Channel 4 News journalist Michael Crick of being a racist and rapped him around the head with the leaflet.
Sources close to Mr Farage told the BBC Mr Bloom’s decision to quit as a UKIP MEP “makes permanent a temporary situation”.