On hearing that that UKIP councillors had backed the Labour candidate Cathy Kent, Jackie Doyle-Price MP tweeted:
Take the view that anyone who has served as deputy mayor should become Mayor whatever party. Bad luck to Tunde #everydayracismCllr Graham Snell, the leader of UKIP 13 councillors in Thurrock, has dismissed the lazy accusation of racism and explained that the Conservatives were informed on a number of occasions prior to nominating Cllr Tunde Ojetola that UKIP would not back him due to his repeated hostility toward the party. Rather than select a new candidate, knowing that Cllr Ojetola would fail to be selected, the Conservatives kept telling Cllr Snell that they hadn't selected a candidate and eventually stopped answering his emails.
There was nothing racist about the decision to back Labour's mayoral candidate and it appears that Cllr Ojetola is the victim of a pathetic attempt to give the Conservatives an excuse to call UKIP racist.