ONE MAN’S SABOTAGE
OF A NOBLE CAUSE
Prepared by Derek Hunnikin
UKIP Membership No. 1428
OF A NOBLE CAUSE
Prepared by Derek Hunnikin
UKIP Membership No. 1428
Having been a member of The UK Independence Party since August 1995 I have witnessed its popularity fluctuate wildly. In the Chichester parliamentary constituency, for example, in April 1998 we had 64 members and, under Roger Knapman’s leadership, reached a peak of 274 in June 2004. Today, July 2011, we have but 124 members. I suspect the Party as a whole has suffered similar ups and downs, but this beggars the question - WHY?
The purpose of this document is to give the reader a clue as to why UKIP is stuck in a rut of mediocrity and, in the eyes of many, is untrustworthy.
Apart from some of my comments in items 19 and 20, the information contained in this document is already in the public domain. All I have done here is to bring some of the disasters inflicted upon UKIP into one document.
For reasons which I trust will become apparent, I was shocked and disappointed when Nigel Farage was re-elected as leader of our Party last year. Clearly, most members are unaware of Farage’s track record. To have him serve on the National Executive Committee (NEC) or as leader is, in my view, unacceptable. His contribution to UKIP should be limited to the speeches he makes in the EU parliament.
This document may give the wrong impression that Farage is solely to blame for UKIP’s less than satisfactory progress – this is not the case. Can anyone doubt that had Conservative party members known just how ignorant David Cameron was, on matters EU, they would have voted him leader? They appear to have selected Cameron purely on the basis of his ‘charisma’. The same goes for UKIP members - many failing to do any research before voting for the leader or NEC members.
I had viewed David Campbell-Bannerman (D.C-B) as a staunch supporter of Farage, and his resignation from the party came as a surprise. However, upon reading his reasons for leaving UKIP, I realised that he was following a long line of people who had got to know Farage well, and had become totally disillusioned with his style of leadership and lack of firm commitment to our cause.
It is ‘par for the course’ that anyone who puts themselves forward as a possible leader, as David Campbell-Bannerman did last year, Farage automatically then regards as an enemy.
What was not revealed, in David’s resignation letter is that, over a period of many months and under his guidance, teams of helpers were organised to produce a comprehensive UKIP manifesto. If one could criticise the work it is that the final document was too detailed and needed downsizing. On its completion, Farage lost no opportunity to belittle and insult David’s contribution to the document. This was probably the tipping-point that prompted David to resign from UKIP.
It was Farage’s decision to remove all 18 policy papers, after years of work by highly dedicated policy teams, and to seriously consider removing even the 2010 manifesto, which confirmed to David that UKIP was not willing to become a serious, credible political party.
Some people have suggested that D. C-B has left UKIP because our MEPs have been asked to contribute £10,000 p.a. to Party funds. D.C-B gave £1,500 in the two months before resigning.
I circulated a copy of David Campbell- Bannerman’s resignation letter to Chichester branch members.
What finally galvanised me into preparing this document was the response I received from a young man, who judges Farage’s suitability as leader on what he sees of him on a computer or television screen. YouTube, I believe, is the most popular source of information for the young. Here follows a copy of the e-mail in question.
Hi and good evening Derek,
After reading D.C-B’s statement (carefully) I am incensed that you feel this is a worthy missive to further push into the UKIP member consciousness - I quote from the honourable David Campbell-Bannerman’s resignation message which is now patently in the public domain, allowing aspirants and adherents of the allegorical NOW (New World Order) to now sleep somewhat easier:
1: “I have lost all faith in UKIP’s ability to win the argument on Europe” - fine we don’t need you with that attitude
2: “A Conservative Party that has demonstrated to me that it is genuinely and deeply Eurosceptic at all levels” – Hey everyone forget paying 50+ million£ a day – how about a referendum?
3: “Is UKIP a proper political party or it is really a pressure group ? “ – Clear Tory HQ media brief.
4: ”Nigel is a plant who is really out to destroy UKIP’s chances from within” – Sit down! Time for your medication.
5: ”I have sadly given up on UKIP ever becoming the serious, credible, fully-fledged political party that it could have become” – Party members of UKIP shape the future direction – you have NO voice or ‘say’ now David as you have left, please close the door after you.
If you have any metal Derek I insist you prove it and disseminate my response to all on our list. I would have a lot more respect for any ‘leadership/UKIP rebels’ if they are prepared to oppose Nigel and offer themselves as an alternative UKIP leadership vision with a constructive and progressive plan – Marta, David and any others (Derek.H?) who wish to divide/disrupt/retard/damage – PUT UP OR SHUT UP!
+Political gains are clearly about internal discipline and consistent external spin, negations of that universal constant will rapidly destroy years of hard work.
If Dan is suggesting I should put myself forward, that is PUT UP, as a prospective leader of UKIP then, as one who is just three months short of his 80th birthday, this is just one of the many reasons I think it would not be a sensible thing to do.
The production of this document is the only way open to me to ‘PUT UP’. Hopefully, for those who read it, it will act as a wake-up call. The fact is that UKIP goes forward as a result of the work of grassroots foot soldiers and an increasing awareness of the public that membership of the EU is bad for them and, indeed, all the peoples of Europe. The limited way in which Farage takes the party forward is more than lost by his poor judgement, aggressive style, and inability to utilise those of greater talents than himself.
No doubt many having read this document could add their own thoughts and record instances worthy of inclusion.
1. The establishment of Nigel Farage as the de facto leader of The UK Independence Party.
2. The events which led to Bryan Smalley, a retired submarine commander and UKIP National Executive Committee member, branding Farage a thief and a liar.
3. A comprehensive critique of Nigel Farage which led to the resignation of well over 200 UKIP members.
4. Anthony Scholefield, who was a founder member of UKIP, writes about Farage’s good and not so good characteristics.
5. Dr. Richard North worked in Brussels for UKIP as a Chief Researcher. Working opposite Farage for a couple of years, Dr. North got to know him well and gives his verdict on Farage as leader of the party This section includes a comment by former leader and founder of the party, Dr. Alan Sked.
6. Richard Suchorzewski would, without doubt, have made a superb leader of UKIP. Farage knew this and is alleged to have launched the most vile character assassination against Richard. This section is a copy of Richard’s letter of resignation from UKIP.
7. Marcus Stead makes very clear, in his letter of resignation from UKIP, how disgusted he is with Farage’s character assassination of Richard Suchorzewski, his leadership shortcomings, and lack of enthusiasm for a UKIP Youth Movement to be set up.
8. UKIP West Dorset Constituency Association Committee resign en-block from UKIP due to the lack of direction from the leadership, the MEP’s doubtful worth, and the disgraceful way the leadership election was conducted.
9. This section quotes a few lines from the resignation letter of Viscount Exmouth.
10. Farage and his cabal launch an attack on Dr. David Abbott. David Abbott was twice elected to the NEC. This section includes the letter written by Dr. Abbott, in which he claimed that a letter he wrote, claiming that Party Rules were frequently ignored, prompted an attack on him to be launched.
11. The Ashford Call Centre was responsible for a massive number of resignations from UKIP. Two members of the Chichester branch had an audience with members of the NEC in London, with the aim of eliminating further damage to the Party. In this they failed. Read the story here.
12. Robin Page was the nationally renowned presenter on TV of ‘One Man and His Dog’. He is a regular contributor to The Sunday Telegraph, and possessor of a brilliant sense of humour. Indeed, at a London UKIP conference he once rendered us all weak with laughter. This section, by Robin, is his version of events which led to him not being included in the prospective MEP list for the EU elections
13. This is an account of the ambush of Delroy Young written by Dr. David Abbott. At the time of the ambush Delroy was working hard to establish a UKIP Youth section.
14. This section, written by Rodney Atkinson, highlights the inability of Farage to recognise when he is leading UKIP further into the EU web of ‘ever closer union’.
15. John Petley writes about his experiences working under Farage as a Research Assistant.
16. Dr. Eric Edmond, who was heavily involved for a number of years in policy decisions by the Bank of England, gives his verdict on why Farage ‘is not fit for purpose’.
17. The UK First Party was set up by a number of ex-UKIP NEC members and party officials in response to dissatisfaction with the party leadership.
18. Probably, because it is the brainchild of Rodney Atkinson, Farage rejects a sound policy for one of no substance.
19. Other matters of interest include Farage’s last minute change of policy for Wales.
20. Conclusion – this poses a question, not an answer.
1. IN THE BEGINNING
The first leader of UKIP, when it was founded towards the end of 1993, was Dr. Alan Sked who was, and still is (as far as I know), a senior lecturer at the London School of Economics. In 1994 Farage proposed that the party endeavour to campaign for UKIP to have MEP representation in the European Parliament. Dr. Sked was adamantly opposed to this proposal, as he thought it would indicate that the United Kingdom had agreed to be subservient to the European Union. Farage’s argument was that UKIP MEPs would generate income for the party and doors, which would otherwise remain closed to our party, would be opened. Farage won the day and Dr. Sked, together with several others, including Colin Bullen (who went on to be a leading light in The Campaign for an Independent Britain), resigned from UKIP.
So, right from the start, Farage has been hugely influential in the policies adopted by UKIP. Indeed, he has been either leader or de facto leader of the party ever since.
All political movements need a figurehead and Farage fulfils that role for UKIP. His energy and passion attract many, particularly the young, and his utilisation of the power of on-line social networking, and especially the online video sharing programme, YouTube, which show his passionate exchanges in the European Parliament to the generally younger viewers.
Without doubt, the fortunes of UKIP are closely linked with the style of leadership and management abilities of Farage, so let us have a look at the history of the party’s ups and downs over the past 17 years.
Dr. Alan Sked resigned as leader of the party in July 1997 and named the then Party Chairman and Treasurer, Craig Mackinlay, as leader. Mackinlay decided that the only way to keep the party going was to rework its constitution and hold a leadership election. Mackinlay, Gerald Roberts, and Michael Holmes stood, with the backing of Farage. Michael Holmes easily won and appointed Mackinlay as his deputy.
Craig Mackinlay resigned from UKIP in 2005 and joined the Conservative Party. I do not have any information on his reasons for leaving UKIP.
Michael Holmes, having won the leadership election in 1997 was, in the same year, elected as an MEP representing the South West. In the same election Farage was elected as an MEP in the South East. As a result of a power struggle, precipitated by an unfortunate remark by Michael Holmes in the European Parliament, and his dismissal of Craig Mackinlay and Tony Scholefield from the NEC, which generated a vote of no confidence in Holmes, he stepped down as leader in 2000.
However, it should be noted that, under Michael Holmes leadership, the membership of UKIP doubled.
Jeffrey Titford was elected as the new leader of UKIP, beating Rodney Atkinson (brother of the comedian Rowan Atkinson) by 15 votes and, again, Farage had backed the winner.
Many believed that Titford should have appointed Rodney Atkinson as deputy leader or, at least, to a position of responsibility within the party. However, because Rodney Atkinson had exposed Conrad Black (who at that time owned the Telegraph group of newspapers) as a member of the Bilderberg Group, Conrad Black put UKIP under pressure not to appoint Rodney Atkinson to a position of authority within UKIP.
Part two tomorrow.