UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been told he will not be able to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph tomorrow during the remembrance Sunday parade for the 100th anniversary of the advent of the Great War, in what he claims is a ‘snub’ to the millions of Britons who vote UKIP.
Senior figures from the royal household, politics, and the military gather once a year on Whitehall by the Edwin Lutyens designed Cenotaph to lay wreaths in commemoration to “The Glorious Dead”. Although UKIP leader Farage hasn’t been invited before, he was clearly hoping the landslide European election victory in which over four million people voted for his party would warrant an invite this time. The Daily Mail reports him as having said on radio: “We’re not invited and I could say to you that personally I would like to be because this is a subject that I care very deeply about. But what I think is, the whole point about political representation at the Cenotaph is it’s not the politician that matters, it’s the voters behind the politician that matter.
“And in the last national election Ukip got 4.4 million votes and none of those people are being represented on Sunday despite the fact there are political parties with far smaller votes than that being represented… Whether it’s me or somebody else doesn’t really matter. But I do think that we won the last election we should have had some representation on Sunday. And I think it’s actually quite a snub to all the millions of people that have voted Ukip”.
When Breitbart London spoke to the Department for Media, Culture and Sport about invitations to the Cenotaph ceremony last month, a spokesman said parties require at least six members of parliament to attend. That means Conservative prime minister David Cameron, Liberal Democrat deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, Labour leader Ed Miliband, and the Ulster-based Democratic Unionist Party leader Nigel Dodds will all lay wreaths, but Nigel Farage with only one MP will not.
Despite the rejection of Farage on those grounds, the other leaders will be joined by a politician who’s party lacks the requires six members of parliament, thanks to a loophole in the system. Although Elfyn Llwyd’s Welsh nationalist Plaid Cymru party only has three members of parliament, because they are in a group with fellow regional nationalist party the Scottish Nationalists, he is permitted to attend and lay a wreath as they have more than six members between them.
Although Farage has missed out on the 1914 centenary, he believes he will be in more luck to lay a wreath to commemorate the carnage of Ypres in 1915 next year, with the coming general election. He said: I’m afraid with this as with everything else, British politics operates like a closed shop and they don’t want anyone new to get involved. Well they’re in for a terrible shock and I’ll tell you something, Ukip will be there next year”.