Winston McKenzie quits UKIP, accuses them of racism

Where will he wash-up next?

Farewell to Westminster dream? Is Winston McKenzie about to bid goodbye to his distant hope of running for parliament?

Cheerio: Winston McKenzie has discovered some figures in UKIP may be racist

Winston McKenzie today announced that he has resigned from UKIP because he has been subjected to racism by the party, after they declined to select him as their candidate to run for London Mayor. McKenzie had been a member of UKIP since 2009. Today’s announcement  prompts the question: why did it take him so long to work it out?

UKIP is, we reckon, at least the sixth party in which the failed boxer and night club manager has sought to pursue a political career, in additional to numerous lost deposits in elections when he has stood as an independent. McKenzie is that rarity in British politics: someone who has managed to get fewer votes in an election than someone who was not standing.*

Inside Croydon is unable to confirm that McKenzie has today requested a membership form for Plaid Cymru, though talks are on-going with the DUP. But then, talks are always on-going with the DUP.

McKenzie had been an unsuccessful UKIP candidate for election on a several occasions, most recently for the Croydon North parliamentary seat at May’s General Election.

McKenzie told ITV News: “I’m incensed at the present moment because where I stand in UKIP, I feel as though I’ve been completely ignored, racially discriminated against by people in the higher echelons of the party. I’m talking about the leader’s followers.”

McKenzie was dropped earlier this year as UKIP’s “Commonwealth spokesman”, as his outlandish conduct and increasingly eccentric pronouncements appeared to cause Nigel Farage, the UKIP leader, growing embarrassment as he sought to have the party taken more seriously.

When seeking UKIP’s nomination for London Mayor, McKenzie’s one policy proposal appeared to be: “London needs an enema.” McKenzie did not even make it on to UKIP’s candidate list for the London Assembly elections, as the party selected Peter Whittle to run for Mayor.

McKenzie’s resignation, however, may have more to do with the on-going controversy surrounding the accounting for thousands of pounds of campaign donations.

As Inside Croydon has reported previously, McKenzie and his close associate, Marianne Bowness, were subject to formal complaints from members of their local UKIP branch. McKenzie had been the chairman of the Croydon North and Lambeth branch of UKIP, and Bowness – the ex-wife of Lord Bowness, the former Tory leader of Croydon Council – was the branch treasurer.

According to local UKIP sources, the investigation earlier this year followed allegations raised about the accounting for donations received by McKenzie and Bowness. As well as the handling of a £1,000 donation for last year’s local election campaign, the matter of a £2,000 loan from an elderly member of the branch was believed to be under scrutiny. Payments to “security” hired for McKenzie’s notorious “Croydon Carnival” before the 2014 local elections were also questioned.

Members of the local branch were concerned about the manner in which party finances were being run while McKenzie and Bowness were also involved with their own enterprise,  a company called CTI Expo Ltd.

The Croydon North and Lambeth branch had its operations suspended for a period by UKIP head office; when it was re-constituted, neither McKenzie nor Bowness held any officer position, although McKenzie did continue as the General Election candidate.

As recently as this weekend, a UKIP spokesman told Inside Croydon: “The party investigation did not find evidence of wrongdoing. Winston and Marianne remain members of the party and the branch.”

Until now, it seems.

* In the 2008 London Mayor election, McKenzie, standing as an independent, came last of all candidates, with 5,389 votes. He was beaten by English Democrat Matt O’Connor, who polled 10,695 votes despite having withdrawn from the election after the ballots were printed.

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About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
This entry was posted in 2015 General Election, 2016 London elections, Croydon North, Winston McKenzie and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Winston McKenzie quits UKIP, accuses them of racism

  1. I doubt that most voters would have known that Matt O’Connor had withdrawn. Most people don’t follow politics that closely. They simply vote for a party name in most cases.

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    • Indeed. And on the occasion cited, they chose to vote for a party which did not have a candidate, rather than for Winston. That must say a great deal about his campaigning abilities and political appeal. Or lack of it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. davidjl2014 says:

    Mr McKenzie is not a serious politician. The only thing that matters to Winston McKenzie is Winston McKenzie himself. His track record proves it and now of course he has to play the race card to hide behind his failure. His efforts to stage a Croydon Carnival before the Council Elections were nothing short of embarrassing and were only contrived to promote one thing. Winston McKenzie. If ever there was an example of Ken Clarke’s UKIP ” fruitcakes” then this man personifies it.

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  3. Winston has already been in the Conservative Party, the Veritas Party, the Unity Party, and UKIP. I believe there is currently a vacancy in the Croydon branch of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party.

    Liked by 1 person

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