Liberal Democrats in Redcar, including the town’s Lib-dem MP, have been called on to cease support for their candidate from next Thursday’s by-election in the Newcomen ward, following revelations of offensive postings on his Facebook profile.
It has been reported earlier this week that Dave Stones, the Liberal Democrat candidate, posted that a pork restaurant and topless bar called ‘You Mecca Me Hot’ should be built across the street from a mosque adding ‘Then we’ll see who’s tolerant’.
The post has been condemned by many religious groups and community organizations including the Muslim Council for Brittan and the Northern TUC.
Labour Group Leader George Dunning believes such behaviour has now tainted what should be an important exercise in local democracy, and is calling on Lib-dem Group Leader Glyn Nightingale, and MP Ian Swales, to intervene and reassure local people that they won’t stand for such behavior from such a clearly discredited candidate.
Cllr Dunning said: ‘The offensive language used and published on these Facebook postings clearly has no place within a borough like ours, which is committed to good community relations, I also expect Cllr Glyn Nightingale and Ian Swales, as political office-holders to support good ‘
‘In view of the complaints from many quarters, and to protect the reputation of the borough as a place committed to good community relations, ‘I’m calling on the Liberal Democrats to do the decent thing and drop Mr Stones as their candidate’
‘I hope we can have unity from the main political parties on this issue, for the benefit of the borough as a whole and the upholding of standards in local politics’
‘Its time for Glyn and Ian to act decisively – for the credibility of their party’
David Stones said: “Someone forwarded me a Facebook status that is clearly in poor taste and instead of deleting it as I should of done I kept it on my page. I apologise unreservedly for any offence caused. I believe strongly in tolerance for people of all races and faiths. I was wrong to cut and paste comments hat were being repeated on Facebook at the time and appreciate some of the language involved was inappropriate.”