The British National Party has put forward its deputy leader as its general election candidate in Stoke-on-Trent Central, one of its top target seats nationally
Simon Darby will help the party launch its nationwide campaign to withdraw Britain’s troops from Afghanistan at a press conference in Stoke-on-Trent on Friday 15 January. Opposition to the global war against terrorism, in the form of the Afghanistan war, will be the BNP’s primary general election campaign theme, Nick Griffin, the party leader, announced at the end of December.
The press conference will also spearhead the BNP’s campaign for the three Stoke-on-Trent parliamentary seats and its local election effort, where the party hopes to defend three of its nine seats and make new council gains. Two BNP councillors, Michael Coleman and Melanie Baddeley, will stand for Parliament in Stoke South and Stoke North respectively.
Darby’s selection in Stoke Central was unexpected as he had already declared a firm intention to fight Dudley North, where he stood in the last general election. “Dudley North is where I will once again demonstrate my faith in my own people, a constituency where in 2005 I doubled my vote to 9.7%,” Darby wrote on 1 August 2009.
“Even if through their gullibility the people of this historic, English town manage to find themselves displaced, disenfranchised and replaced by the evil ambitions of the Islamo-Marxist monsters I will not have it said that nobody cared enough about them to give them a choice between effectively life or death.”
Darby’s concern for the people of Dudley North appears to have been overtaken by the prospect of greater personal glory in Stoke-on-Trent. He thinks there is “a real chance of a BNP victory here”, especially as the Conservatives have “decided to insult the electorate with a joke candidate – a Pakistani, belly-dancer”. It is unclear whether it is her ethnicity or her profession that upsets Darby more.
Darby claims that his selection for Stoke Central was “agreed some time ago”, but “kept under wraps”. That seems unlikely as Alby Walker had been expected to contest the seat until his sudden decision just before Christmas to quit as leader of the city’s BNP council group.
According to Darby, Walker has offered to act as his election agent and Ken Griffiths, a BNP Black Country activist, will step into the breach in Dudley North.
Hope not Hate