‘Knock down mosques’ rant of candidate

Date published: 02 May 2014

A UKIP candidate standing in Oldham is at the centre of controversy after calling for mosques to be knocked down and Islam to be banned.

Jackie Garnett, who is standing in Royton South in this month’s local elections, posted controversial comments from her personal Facebook account UKIP leaders yesterday distanced themselves from her views and launched an investigation.

Mrs Garnett wrote the comments under the pen-name of “Aunty Jack Aguero”.

Under the same name, Mrs Garnett has also accused Muslims of carrying-out “ethnic cleansing” against the English.

During a visit to Oldham yesterday after launching UKIP’s European election campaign in Manchester, MEP and party deputy leader Paul Nuttall distanced UKIP from the comments and claimed his party is being victimised.

He said: “The matter has been passed on to the party chairman and he will be dealing with it swiftly.

“The comments she made are not party policies in any way, shape or form. They are not comments I would make and I do not agree with them.

However he added: “There is currently a witch hunt against UKIP. If other parties were put under the microscope as much as us, I can assure you that much worse things would be found.

“We are becoming more and more popular at the moment and we will continue to go up in the polls the more they do this to us.”

Mrs Garnett commented on a link to an article on the Chronicle’s Facebook page on April 11. She said: “I’m voting UKIP to do my bit to save Oldham before Labour turn it into a total Muslim ghetto.”