Ukip suspends councillor David Silvester who blamed floods on David Cameron passing gay marriage bill
Party officials act after Mr Silvester gave radio interview saying he ‘prays gay people will be healed’
Ukip has suspended a councillor who blamed the recent floods on the passage of the gay marriage bill, after he continued to give interviews “promoting his own controversial views”.
David Silvester, a councillor for Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire, had written to a local paper claiming the country had been “beset by storms” because of David Cameron’s decision to act “arrogantly against the Gospel” in changing marriage laws.
He was told by the party to stop airing his personal beliefs, yet proceeded to appear live on BBC Radio Berkshire saying he “prayed for gay people to be healed”.
Mr Silvester said the new law, paving the way for the first gay marriages in Britain this spring, was the latest mistake which would anger God - following on from abortion laws, which he likened to the Holocaust.
In the radio interview, he said: “I don't have a problem with gay people.
“I believe as a Christian I should love gay people and, indeed, I do. My prayer for them is they will be healed.
“I believe that is what the Apostle Paul said in the New Testament, he said some of you are gay but you have been healed. There is healing for the gay condition and I believe a Christian should long for gay people to be healed and to have normal heterosexual lives.
“It is nonsense to say it is homophobic. If you love a person enough to want them to be healed and to have a proper family, that is hardly homophobic.
“It is a spiritual disease... it's not what I say, it's what the Bible says.”
Ukip leader Nigel Farage said he would be vetting election candidates to remove 'extremist, nasty or barmy' views from the party Mr Silvester, who defected to Ukip from the Conservative Party, said he was convinced that there were “repercussions for a nation persisting in what is wrong”, and that he had clear beliefs “there are things that are right and wrong”.
“Over the years we have done many things that have caused problems,” he said.
“One, for example, is the abortion laws in which something like six million children, as many as the people killed by the Nazis in the death camps, have been killed as a result of the abortion laws.
“Now, this is a process. The latest in this process is these homosexual laws and the homosexual marriage.”
Despite supporting Mr Silvester following his initial comments, Ukip has now used emergency powers to suspend him.
The party’s south east chairman Roger Bird said the councillor had acted “contrary to party requests and continued to court the media”.
“We cannot have any individual using the Ukip banner to promote their controversial personal beliefs which are not shared by the party,” Mr Bird said.
The Conservative District Councillor for Henley, William Hall, told The Independent: “Many people in the town feel embarrassed to be associated with the content of his letter.
“The more Ukip supporters see of the real party the more I hope they realise that underneath the varnish is a seriously unpleasant organisation.”
Mr Silvester's suspension came as Ukip leader Nigel Farage said he had launched a clear-out to remove from the party anyone with “extremist, nasty or barmy views”.
Mr Farage told the Sun on Sunday all 1,818 candidates running in elections for Ukip would be vetted, while insisting that “of all the candidates we fielded, only about half a dozen have caused us any embarrassment”.
- 1 Students heading off to 'charity challenge' grounded at Gatwick after travel firm goes bust
- 2 Notting Hill Carnival: Woman shares selfie after being ‘punched in face for telling man to stop groping her’
- 3 Daily Show's Jon Stewart destroys Fox News for its Ferguson coverage
- 4 When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
- 5 Like Jennifer Aniston, I am no less of a woman because I am childless
Ashya King missing: Police hunt five-year-old boy with brain tumour snatched from Southampton hospital by his parents
YouTube video posted by Isis militants shows 'execution of 250 Syrian soldiers'
Daily Show's Jon Stewart destroys Fox News for its Ferguson coverage
Californian drought is so severe it's 'causing the ground to move'
Botched ice bucket challenge leaves man critically injured after plane drops hundreds of gallons of water
Exclusive: We share blame for creating 'jihad generation', says Muslim strategist
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage
- < Previous
- Next >
£350 - £400 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Cent...
£17000 - £20000 Per Annum Bonus, Life Insurance + Other Benefits: Clearwater P...
£450 - £500 per day: Orgtel: SAS Business Analyst, London, Banking, Credit Ris...
£32000 - £38000 Per Annum Bonus, Life Insurance + Other Benefits: Clearwater P...