East Antrim Alliance MLA Stewart Dickson has asked the DUP’s Sammy Wilson to urgently clarify comments after he was filmed appearing to agree with a racist comment.
Mr Wilson was being interviewed for BBC’s Spotlight programme in Carrickfergus when he stopped to talk to a member of the public who stated “Get the ethnics out,” to which the East Antrim MP appeared to reply “You are absolutely right you know.”
Mr Dickson said such remarks and sentiments were very dangerous.
“I would call on Mr Wilson to explain what happened in this incident and whether he agreed with such a racist comment, and I ask him to do so immediately. There can never be any excuse for such views.
“The vast majority of people in Northern Ireland want a more welcoming, inclusive and progressive society. Racist language such as this only fosters hate and division. As someone who represents all of East Antrim, I value all those who have made this place their home and know the contribution they make.
“Those parties who have willingly entered electoral pacts in the past with the DUP and their representatives for their own political ends need to look at how hollow their condemnations now ring.
“We all have a responsibility to make Northern Ireland an open place, where people from all backgrounds feel safe and valued. We must unite to show we are welcoming. Such racist views and language must become a thing of the past.”