'Bongo' MEP 'regrets offence'

The UK Independence Party Euro MP who said Britain should not send aid to "bongo bongo land" said he sincerely regrets "any genuine offence which might have been caused".

Cameron condemns offensive comments by Ukip MEP

David Cameron

The Prime Minister has hit out at a UK Independence Party MEP who said Britain should not send aid to "bongo bongo land".

David Cameron branded the comments by Godfrey Bloom "offensive", and insisted helping other countries was in the national interest.

Speaking on BBC Breakfast, said: "I think it is an offensive remark anyway, but what I think is wrong is this sort of 'stop the world, I want to get off' approach just doesn't work."

Mr Bloom has issued an apology "for any genuine offence caused" after being rebuked by the party leadership for his language.

Read more: 'Bongo' MEP 'regrets offence

Ukip's Godfrey Bloom walks out of Channel 4 interview

The senior Ukip politician who was caught on camera saying Britain should not send aid to "bongo bongo land" has walked out of a Channel 4 interview.

Becoming increasingly agitated by questions about his comments, the MEP said: "If you're not going to move on there isn't much point continuing, is there?" before removing his earpiece, bringing a premature end to the interview with Channel 4 News presenter Krishnan Guru-Murphy.

Godfrey Bloom seen removing his earpiece before walking out of an interview with Channel 4 Credit: Channel 4 News

Before walking out, Godfrey Bloom said he did not see why the phrase was racist insisting he had started a "national debate" about the issue of foreign aid.

The MEP said he would not use the phrase again because "he did not want to upset his party boss or chairman".

Watch the full interview on the Channel 4 website

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Nigel Farage pleased with Ukip MEP apology

Ukip leader Nigel Farage has said he is pleased MEP Godfrey Bloom has apologised for the use of the term "bongo bongo land".

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Godfrey 100% right over foreign aid budget but pleased he's apologised over the wrong language he used. http://t.co/hCyKy8K25H

Godfey Bloom earlier expressed regret over the use of the remark, saying he "sincerely regrets any genuine offence caused".

Read: Ukip MEP: Stop sending aid 'to bongo bongo land'

Ukip MEP 'sincerely regrets' offence at bongo remark

The Ukip MEP Godfrey Bloom has said he "sincerely regrets any genuine offence" caused by his "bongo bongo land" remark. A statement on his website reads:

At a public speech in the West Midlands in early July I used a term which I subsequently gather under certain circumstances could be interpreted as pejorative to individuals and possibly cause offence. Although quite clearly no such personal usage was intended, I understand from UKIP Party Chairman Steve Crowther and leader Nigel Farage that I must not use the terminology in the future, nor will I and sincerely regret any genuine offence which might have been caused or embarrassment to my colleagues.

My aim, successful as it appears, was to demonstrate the immorality of sending £1 billion per month abroad when we are desperately short of money here. Ring fenced overseas aid at nearly 70% of estimated GDP growth next year, some to buy arms - Mirage fighters in Argentina is just one example.

My constituents come first and always will, they put me here to speak for them.

– godfrey bloom MEP

Watch: Ukip MEP refuses to apologise for 'bongo bongo comment

Ukip: Party reps banned from saying 'bongo bongo'

Ukip chairman Steve Crowther has said that no party representative would ever use the phrase "bongo bongo land" again.

He said the phrase was not racist but could be seen as disparaging, adding that Godfrey Bloom used it as shorthand for "foreign parts" in receipt of British aid.

Asked why it was not racist since it seemed to imply natives banging drums, Mr Crowther told Sky News:

It's very odd to be asked why something isn't racist. In my opinion it is a rather outdated description of foreign parts.

To me it doesn't sound like anybody banging drums. It sounds like a shorthand way of saying places around the world which are in receipt of foreign aid.

– steve crowther, chairman, ukip

Watch: Ukip MEP refuses to apologise for 'bongo bongo' remark

Former youth leader accuses Ukip of hypocrisy

The former leader of Ukip's youth wing, Oliver Neville, has accused the party of hypocrisy after its MEP Godfrey Bloom appeared to get away lightly for his comments on "bongo bongo land".

Former Ukip youth leader Oliver Neville
Former Ukip youth leader Oliver Neville Credit: ITV News

Mr Neville was fired by the party leadership after expressing his own views on gay marriage in a radio interview, and believes it was because his opinion was at odds with the party's socially conservative agenda.

He told ITV News: "There is a very big difference between the type of punishments you get depending on who you are and who you know".

Watch: Ukip MEP refuses to apologise for 'bongo bongo comment

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Ukip MEP 'perfectly happy' to stop using 'bongo' phrase

Ukip MEP Godfrey Bloom has said he will not use the term "bongo bongo land" again after he was asked not to do so by his party chairman.

He told ITV News: "My chairman has said don't use it again and I'm perfectly happy to comply with that."

But he added that he would not apologise for his comments and that he felt he had done a "public service" but provoking debate on the subject of foreign aid.

Read: Ukip asks 'bongo bongo' MEP not to use phrase again

Ukip leader expelled MEP for 'bongo bongo' remark

UKIP leader Nigel Farage expelled an Italian MEP from a parliamentary group earlier this year after he referred to the Italian government as a "bongo bongo" administration following the appointment of its first black minister.

Italian MEP Mario Borghezio
Italian MEP Mario Borghezio Credit: Mauro Scrobogna/LaPresse/Empics Entertainment

Mario Borghezio MEP, a member of Italy's right wing Northern League, was formally expelled in June after Mr Farage described his comments as "repugnant".

“We have sent out an unmistakable signal that racist comments are unacceptable,” he is cited as saying.

Mr Farage is co-chairman of the eurosceptic Europe of Freedom and Democracy group in the European Parliament.

Ukip asks 'bongo bongo' MEP not to use phrase again

Ukip chairman Steve Crowther has asked Ukip MEP Godfrey Bloom to refrain from using a phrase - presumably "bong bongo land" - but added that a wider discussion on foreign aid was needed:

We are asking Godfrey not to use this phrase again, as it might be considered disparaging by members from other countries. However, foreign aid is an extremely important debate that needs wider discussion.

– steve crowther, chairman, ukip

Reports: Ukip asks MEP not to use phrase again

The chairman of the Ukip party has asked its MEP Godfrey Bloom not to use a phrase - assumed to be "bong bongo land" - anymore, according to media sources. He is cited as saying:

We are asking Godfrey not to use this phrase again as it might be considered disparaging by members from other countries.

– ukip chairman
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