(report by Bunny La Roche, pics by Kent IS, video by Thanet Watch)
Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party, visited east Kent on Monday. He was here to meet local UKIP members and woo local Tories in advance of the Euro elections later this year. But his visit did not quite go to plan – he was greeted by a throng of angry protesters.
Kent Internationalist Socialists and members of the SWP were tipped off last Thursday about Farage’s visit. We set up a Facebook event, contacted people in Thanet and met with local Green party councillor Ian Driver to help promote a demonstration to “welcome” him.
Protesters gathered around 2pm at the Walpole Hotel in Cliftonville. The small, noisy gathering included socialists, animal rights activists, anti-fracking campaigners and members of the local Czech community.
UKIP did well in the Kent county council elections last May, winning seven of the eight seats in Thanet. It was now on Farage’s list of seats to contest in the 2015 general election. But after yesterday’s protest he was asked if he would be standing by ITV News and replied: “What? With a welcome like that?”
Bunny told Thanet Watch:
He is a racist and a bigot trying to get himself into parliament based on people’s fears. The media are all in a frenzy about him every time he comes out with something. The Tories, Labour and Liberal Democrats then try to catch up with him. What’s really frightening is that he moves the agenda to the right. And that’s why we have to stop him.