18:25 GMT +321 September 2019
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    A voter wears a UK Independence Party (UKIP) rosette as he stands outside a polling station in Brighton, southern England on May 7, 2015

    Twitterverse Shatters as UKIP Secretary General Compares Party to Black Death

    © AFP 2019 / GLYN KIRK
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    Speaking on the Radio 4 program Today, Secretary General of the UK Independence Party (UKIP) Paul Oakley has drawn parallels between his party and the plague – social media users are astounded.

    Oakley opted for a rather unconventional comparison when discussing UKIP’s loss of over 90 council seats during the local elections with host Nick Robinson.

    “Think of the Black Death in the Middle Ages – it comes along, it causes disruption then it goes dormant… that’s what we’ll be doing. Our time isn’t finished. Brexit is being betrayed and there is a lot of anger in the country about that,” he said.

    When Robinson sought to clarify if Oakley really made an analogy between UKIP and the Black Death, the Secretary General said that it was exactly what he meant, and wondered, “What’s wrong with that?”

    “It also led to economic growth and the Renaissance, but this isn't a history lesson. It got rid of the whole issue of servitude and allowed people to go into the towns, escape their landlords and create their own businesses,” Oakley replied, after the host tried to explain that the disease claimed lives of hundreds of thousands of people

    Oakley’s remark couldn’t help but spur an avalanche of reactions on social media platforms, with many saying that he made the worst possible comparison…

    …there were also those who simply couldn’t believe that he actually said those words:

    Meanwhile, others noted that the analogy was quite apt:

    Some said it was an “unusual spin strategy”:

    The jaw-dropping remark even became reason for uncontrollable laughter, due to the shock:

    The most devastating pandemic in history, the Black Death, is estimated to have killed half of Europe’s population and anywhere between 75 and 200 million people in Eurasia.

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    plague, UKIP, Paul Oakley, United Kingdom
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