Boris Johnson’s black advisor quits

Johnson’s senior black adviser resigned after a report on racism in Britain caused a stir. The government denies a connection, others express doubts about it.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s senior black advisor has resigned after a report on racism sparked outrage. Samuel Kasumu submitted his resignation last week, Downing Street announced on Thursday. The day before, a government-commissioned report by a commission on Racism and Ethnic Inequalities (CRED) was published, which sees no structural racism in British society.

Kasumu apparently wanted to resign in February after complaining of “unbearable” tensions on Downing Street. At the time, he said Johnson’s Conservative Party had “policies riddled with division,” the BBC reported. Kasumu was a special adviser on civil society.

Not related to CRED publication

A government spokesman confirmed Kasumu’s departure from office in May, but stressed that the decision was unrelated to the release of the CRED report. The Commission on Racism and Ethnic Inequalities (CRED) was only set up last year after protests by the Black Lives Matter movement.

The CRED report caused outrage in the UK. It describes that, although prejudice persists in the country, it is not “institutionally racist”. Johnson said the paper will help educate politicians about “the true nature of the barriers and discrimination that minorities undoubtedly feel”. “There are very serious racism-related problems in our society that we need to address,” he added.

Casumu’s exit speaks volumes

The country can be seen “as a model for other countries with a white majority,” according to the 264-page report. In this 24 recommendations were made, among other things to build trust between the police and minority groups.

Kasumu’s exit speaks volumes, despite the government’s denials that it was linked to the report, said Marsha de Cordova, spokeswoman for equality for the opposition Labor Party. The report “appears to glorify slavery and suggests that institutional racism does not exist, although there is evidence to the contrary,” she said.

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