Conservative councillor apologises for sending allegedly antisemitic video in WhatsApp group
A Conservative Party councillor in Worcester has apologised after he sent a video that was reported to have been antisemitic in nature to a WhatsApp group.
Cllr Allah Ditta sent the video to a group called ‘Campaign News’, which contained several prominent Conservatives, including Worcester MP Robin Walker and leader of Worcester City Council, Marc Bayliss.
The video reportedly contained a clip from an American talk show, during which one of the guests made antisemitic remarks.
Cllr Ditta, who claimed that the message had been sent when his phone was left attended, said: “As soon as I became aware of this event I immediately deleted the content and sent an explanation and apology to those on the group.
“The chairman of the association acknowledged this as you can see from the message. I absolutely condemn all forms of racism. I have friends across all faiths and believe in diversity 100 per cent.”
Mr Walker said that “By the time I saw the video was shared in the chat, it had been deleted, adding: “Quite rightly so it was looked into at the time but it was established that the video did not come from a member of the group. As an association, we have several Jewish candidates and we never tolerate any form of discrimination, and antisemitism is included in that.”
However, Michael Foster, who previously served as a Labour Party MP for Worcester, drafted a letter to Conservative Party Chairman, Oliver Dowden MP, about the video.
Mr Foster said: “This screenshot and the video were shared with me by somebody who was involved in the group chat. The fact that Cllr Ditta claims this was a mistake and that his phone was left unattended is ridiculous.
“Given what the Labour party went through with antisemitism, it is critically important that this is highlighted and addressed. We have to ask why he has this kind of content on his phone in the first place?”
Campaign Against Antisemitism advocates for zero tolerance of antisemitism in public life. To that end we monitor all political parties and strive to ensure that any cases of concern are properly addressed.