The British National Party is shutting down its Belfast office, Steven Moore, the Sunday World’s leading investigative journalist, will reveal on Sunday. Doubts over the future of the call centre had arisen after it emerged that Jim Dowson, the BNP’s fundraising and management consultant, had fallen out with the party.
The relationship between the BNP leader Nick Griffin and Dowson, a convicted criminal who had control of the bulk of the party’s assets and operations, suffered irretrievable breakdown because of Griffin’s employment of Patrick Harrington to help run the party’s administration.
Harrington, one of the leaders of the rival Third Way party and general secretary of the BNP’s fake trade union, Solidarity, has wormed himself into a position of growing influence in the party, upsetting several employees and members in the process. Many are suspicious, seeing Harrington as a cuckoo in the nest.
Serial liar Dowson, who once told the Sunday World that he never joined the BNP but says he remains “100% loyal”, claimed recently that before his departure he assaulted Harrington.
This is the second time that Griffin has had to pack up an office in Northern Ireland and skedaddle back to the mainland. Twenty years ago he and his comrades fled after loyalist paramilitaries indicated it would be unhealthy for them to stay after Harrington, then one of Griffin’s comrades in the National Front Political Soldiers, refused to condemn the Provisional IRA’s mainland bombing campaign.
In summer Griffin and Dowson jetted off to the south of France with their families for the wedding of one of Dowson’s daughters. Now Dowson is unlikely to be on the guest list for Harrington’s wedding this Friday.
Staff in the Belfast bunker, who had mostly been brought in from outside the province, had been promised job security as Griffin recognised that they would be left in a vulnerable situation if they moved back to the mainland. Like nearly everything else Griffin says, his word has proved worthless.
Sonia Gable at HOPE not hate