A south west Wales councillor has resigned after comparing black anti-racism protesters to monkeys jumping on a car at a safari park.
Former mayor of Pembroke Dock Peter Kraus, 68, has stepped down after posting the ‘vile, racist’ side-by-side images on his Facebook page, leaving local officials and residents ‘disgusted’. One picture showed a group of baboons wreaking havoc on top of a car at a safari park, which was paired with an image of black protesters stood on a US police car.
He later deleted the post after residents and fellow councillors in Pembroke Dock complained and publicly condemned the post shared by Mr Kraus. The ex-councillor initially claimed he had been ‘hacked’ and that ‘he doesn’t know how’ it happened.
But he later admitted he had shared the images and attempted to defend his actions by claiming he has ‘lots of black friends’.
Pembroke Dock Town Council confirmed Mr Kraus has resigned by letter, adding: ‘Members of the Council would like to thank Peter for all his hard work which he has undertaken over the years throughout the Town and for his continued efforts within the Town Council.’
Mr Kraus – who served as Pembroke Dock Mayor between 2012 and 2013 – wrote on Facebook that he is ‘innocent’ and that he couldn’t understand why the images were considered racist.
He wrote on June 19: ‘This is a message to all you Lovely People out there who seem to think of me a Racist Person. I have never in my whole Life been Racist in any way or form.
‘I have hundreds of my Friends who are Black and they are TRUE FRIENDS. Even from the 1960s when I lived in London.
‘The picture in question which I am sure you are all referring to actually means to me that some People are worse than Animals and enjoy and destoying things, wether it be Vehicles, Buildings or Statutes [sic].’
His fellow ward councillor Joshua Beynon complained to the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman about the post.
Labour member Mr Beyon said: ‘I’m sad to see another derogatory post, this time one that compares black people to monkeys, it is the lowest of the low.
‘While it seems that there is a lot of hatred and negativity around, this whole event has highlighted the urgent need to fight racism that is clearly evident in our county.
‘I will continue to call it out when I see it.’
He said when he saw the post he was ‘shocked and disgusted,’ telling The Independent: ‘Unfortunately it goes to show the kind of vile, racist stuff being shared online. It’s 2020 and we have to do a whole lot better than this.’
The council’s official Facebook page said on June 17 that it had received ‘a number of complaints’ relating to a Pembroke Dock Town Councillor.
It added: ‘The Town Council do not condone posts of any racial nature and any items posted on personal social media pages of Councillors are their own view and not one of the Town Council.’
TotalNews.uk has contacted Dyfed-Powys Police for comment.
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