December 11, 2008
Posted by Antifascist
Councillor Lawrence Rustem (second right) was asked to say sorry for his previous statement that teaching sex education to children before secondary school was akin to paedophilia. But rather than withdraw his statement, Rustem instead launched into a long rant about the Labour government and immigration declaring that he would 'answer the question the way I want to answer it.'
When even calls from his own party members to 'shut up' were ignored, Rustem was escorted from the chamber. Not willing to leave it there, he turned on a Labour councillor and offered him 'outside for a dance.' The offer was understandably declined.
Other highlights from the meeting included the BNP group leader Robert Bailey calling a Labour councillor a Nazi and Richard Barnbrook boasting about his rugby skills. Other vital matters raised by the BNP concerned the supply of Halal meat in schools and the plight of the 'native minority' in the 'Labour borough of Ealing'.
As I left the pubic gallery, people around me complained about the 'squabbling' that always takes place at these meetings. And as I stepped outside a clearly distraught woman turned on the assembled BNP councillors and screamed at them for failing to talk about 'the kids'. Ignoring calls from Richard Barnbrook for her to return, she quickly walked off down the street, crying as she went.
This was my first time in Barking and Dagenham and whatever grief or worries she was feeling I cannot tell you. But from watching the paralysis caused by the BNP in the council chamber last night, I can see little chance of her concerns being met any time soon.