Tory Peer Mone Slammed as ‘Racist and Abusive’ Over Alleged 'Waste of a Man’s White Skin’ Message
Allegations of racism regarding Conservative peer Michelle Mone relate to a tragic incident involving a yacht in summer of 2019 and a subsequent purported exchange of heated messages with a guest on the crashed vessel.
Conservative member of the House of Lords Michelle Mone
is under fire after an official complaint accused her of sending racist and abusive messages. A man purportedly of Indian heritage has claimed she referred to him as “a waste of a man’s white skin” in a WhatsApp message sent in June 2019, reported The Guardian.
The message is said to have been part of a series of exchanges, screenshots of which were sent to the House of Lords commissioner for standards. According to screenshots of the exchanges, cited by the outlet, the Tory peer, appointed to the House of Lords by David Cameron
in 2015, appeared to also make derogatory remarks about the man’s partner, suggesting that she was a “mental loony” and “nut case bird”.
The reportedly heated exchange of messages was linked to a yacht crash in late May 2019. Mone and her husband, businessman Douglas Barrowman, had been partying on their yacht with guests who had arrived on another boat.
When that other yacht began to head back to shore in Monaco, it crashed into Barrowman’s vessel, killing one crew member.
Mone and the afore-mentioned complaintant, who described himself as brown-skinned and was purportedly a financial consultant briefly employed by Barrowman, became caught up in a disagreement on WhatsApp in the weeks that followed.
According to the man who had been a guest on the other boat, his partner had been seriously traumatised by the yacht crash. On 13 June 2019, says the complaint, Mone questioned whether the woman had indeed suffered psychologically after the accident. The peer had purportedly pointed out that the couple had been partying “only a few days after”.
According to the screenshots, Michelle Mone said: “OMG what a pile of cr*p!! … You & your mental loony of a girlfriend have been parting [sic] like mad! … 48 hours after the guy was killed. Your [sic] a low life, a waste of a mans [sic] white skin so don’t give us your lies. Your [sic] a total disgrace.”
Mone ostensibly added: “Now you deal with the police enquiries including your nut case bird.” The man says he responded to this barrage by saying he had not known Michelle Mone was “a racist”.
The unnamed man made a complaint to Martin Jelley, the Lords commissioner for standards, in August 2021, alleging that Mone’s behaviour had amounted to bullying and harassment with use of messages that were “derogatory and racist” towards him and “abusive and derogatory” towards his partner. However, the commissioner replied that he could not investigate because the Lords code of conduct applies only to members “in the course of their parliamentary duties and activities”.
The complainant is said to have subsequently written to the Committee on Standards in Public Life, an advisory body to the UK Prime Minister, to deplore the fact that the Lords code “takes no notice of its members’ conduct outside of the house, however reprehensible”.
As the commissioner informed Michelle Mone of the lodged complaint, he added that it would go no further, writes the outlet.
A spokesperson for the Tory peer was cited as saying:
“Baroness Mone is 100% not a racist. Baroness Mone and her husband have built over 15 schools in Africa in the past three years.”
In a follow-up statement, Mone’s lawyers said the peer had “no access” to the messages and no “detailed memory of them”.
“She is not prepared to comment on the messages unless and until their authenticity has been confirmed but Baroness Mone, in any event, very strongly denies that she is a racist, a sexist or that she has a lack of respect for those persons genuinely suffering with mental health difficulties,” stated the lawyers.
It was also claimed that at the time Michelle Mone had no knowledge that the complainant “was anything other than white British, as his appearance is 100% white, with a cut-glass English accent”.
While questioning the motives of the complainant, the lawyers also doubted the authenticity of the messages, according to The Guardian. The exchanges appeared “written in a manic way, in keeping with someone with coherency issues, rather than from a well-educated and articulate Baroness”.