Nigel Farage accused of homophobia after ‘fags’ joke at brother’s wedding
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been accused of homophobia after a video has surfaced in which he makes a joke about “fags” at his brother’s wedding.
The joke was made at the July 2001 wedding, at which Rod Stewart was a guest, and is visible.
It focussed on the death of a man at Michael Barrymore’s house, which happened several months before.
In the best man speech, available to watch on the Mail, Farage says: “As far as smokers here are concerned there’s good news and bad news for you. The bad news was we were not allowed to smoke until the coffee was served.
“But the good news for us who are smokers is that we are far better off here than if we had been at Michael Barrymore’s house. Because there they removed all the ashtrays on the basis that now they chuck all the fags in the pool.”
Farage, the best man at the wedding, told the Mail: “It was a best man’s speech for Christ sake. If you look at the whole video I told a whole series of jokes.
“There was absolutely no malice intended in it at all. That particular joke was one doing the rounds quite widely at the time.”
The UKIP leader did not apologise for the joke, however.
The wedding took place in Downe in Kent, between Farage’s younger brother Andrew and his wife Wendy.
In the video, after he tells the joke, Rod Stewart looks extremely uncomfortable, playing with his hair, and a female guest next to Farage gasps.
31-year-old Stuart Lubbock died at Michael Barrymore’s home in March 2001, and was found dead in the swimming pool.
Lubbock was found with cocaine and ecstasy in his blood, and an inquest found internal injuries suggesting that he was the victim of a sexual assault.
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The outcome of the inquest was open, however, and nobody was charged in the case.
According to the Daily Mail, the person who recorded the video said they handed it over because there was “no doubt” that Farage is “homophobic”.
He said: “He is homophobic. It’s disgusting. He is an out and out liar if he says he is not homophobic, there’s no question of that.
“His attitude is dreadful. He is now trying the soft touch, but he’s definitely homophobic. No question about it. He is a total hypocrite. I want the nation to see it.”
The video emerged just hours before polls open for the general election. Farage is standing in the seat of South Thanet, but has said he will step down as UKIP leader if he fails to become elected.