Breitbart London’s editor in chief has said he is the best-placed leadership candidate to carry on Nigel Farage’s legacy in UKIP, to give disenfranchised voters a voice, and to make sure ‘Brexit’ happens.
Raheem Kassam, a close ally of former leader Farage who worked as his chief advisor in the run up to the 2015 General Election in which UKIP received four million votes, yesterday announced his intention to run for leadership of the party.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live Breakfast, Kassam explained that having considered the candidates at UKIP’s last leadership election he felt compelled to stand so that the party can continue pushing the principles that brought it so much success.
He said: “Nobody is better placed to carry on Nigel’s legacy and that is the legacy of making sure Brexit happens and making sure that the disenfranchised voters across the United Kingdom have a voice in British politics.”
“I’ve worked with Nigel, I’ve worked for Nigel and I continue to work with Nigel and I know what people who’ve bought into UKIP during the last 25 years really want this party to do,” Kassam added.
Noting that the last leadership race was plagued with negativity, with “candidates tied up in attacking each other”, Kassam said: “I don’t believe in that. People who get into politics believe in one thing and that is doing the best for the country.”
When interviewer Clare McDonnell suggested the party is still divided as UKIP’s last leader Diane James resigned after just 18 days, unable to get agreement to push changes in the party, Kassam agreed it was “sad”, but marked out his intention to do things differently.
He contrasted the “clean campaign manifesto” which he’s running with the dirty tricks which took place at the last race with some candidates and members anonymously briefing newspapers and news outlets behind others’ backs.
He said: “Quite frankly it’s about time somebody just had the gumption to stand up and say ‘this is what I believe in and this is what we are going to do’.”