After UKIP’s new leader Paul Nuttall had his claim that he lost close personal friends in the fatal crush at the Hillsborough stadium disaster exposed as yet another pack of lies, his stock on Merseyside has been in freefall. And worse was to come for the “Bad Bootle Meff” and his fellow Kippers when former leader Nigel “Thirsty” Farage told another deliberate and malicious pack of lies about the Hillsborough support groups.
An' now I really HAVE shot meself in the head
Mr Thirsty pretended that Nuttall had reached out to those groups and had been rebuffed due to interventions by the Labour Party. Both the Hillsborough Families Support Group and the Hillsborough Justice Campaign treated Farage’s clumsy and dishonest intervention with contempt. Worse for UKIP, campaigning MPs Andy Burnham and Steve Rotheram confirmed that the claims were without any basis in fact.
Burnham has now made this statement: “To this point, I have avoided comment on Paul Nuttall & Hillsborough. But now feel compelled to reply to this … .@Steve4LCRmayor & I wish to make clear that the comments by @Nigel_Farage in relation to Labour are entirely false … We set up an All-Party Group to provide cross-party support for the Hillsborough families & take the issue beyond party politics”.
And now it has got much, much worse for the UKIP leadership: Stuart Monkham, branch chairman of Nuttall’s own UKIP branch in Liverpool, who must have been aghast at Farage’s catastrophic and entirely avoidable blunder, has bowed to the inevitable and not merely resigned his post, but also his party membership.
He has released a statement this morning, in which he tells “Although the timing of our resignations is unfortunate in light of upcoming elections, both Adam and I wish to make it clear, where the painful subject of Hillsborough is concerned, with closure not yet in sight, this unprofessional approach and crass insensitivity from high profile people closely within and without UKIP is upsetting and intolerable”. And there was more.
“We identify most strongly with all the good people of Liverpool and most importantly the families of the Hillsborough victims who have fought so long and hard for justice, in their condemnation of the way UKIP has handled these issues and have resigned our positions and membership of UKIP forthwith”. His colleague was the UKIP Merseyside chairman.
The sneering and dismissive behaviour of Arron Banks, Nuttall’s clumsy Walter Mitty fantasising, and Farage’s jolly dishonesty, have all come together and created a perfect storm. The chairmen of UKIP’s Liverpool and Merseyside branches effectively had no choice - either they stood with their fellow Scousers, or sold them down the river.
Paul Nuttall’s career as UKIP leader may also be over by the end of this week - and with his party falling apart around him, the future of the Kippers looks bleak. For him, Banks, and Farage, it really couldn’t happen to more deserving individuals.