COLUMN: Matt Western MP talks Frank Hester and another leadership contest - The Leamington Observer

COLUMN: Matt Western MP talks Frank Hester and another leadership contest

Last week there were reports of some truly dreadful comments made by Frank Hester, a man who has donated at least £10 million to the Conservative Party.

Mr Hester allegedly made the following comments in 2019: “It’s like trying not to be racist but you see Diane Abbott on the TV, and you’re just like… you just want to hate all black women because she’s there. And I don’t hate all black women at all, but I think she should be shot.”

They are utterly abhorrent comments and must be called what they are: racist, misogynistic and dangerous. For 36 hours the prime minister ignored the issue.

Eventually, he had to be dragged into calling the comments racist, only after sending his ministers out on the airwaves to say they weren’t. To date the Conservatives have failed to return the £10 million this man donated to their party.

It cannot be right that a man who has made tens of millions of pounds from NHS contracts under this Conservative government can be allowed to make such comments without sanction. There is a wider issue about political party funding here. Whether it is from a man who has called for Britain’s first black MP ‘to be shot’ or from Russian oligarchs, I sense they simply do not care.

In the same week we have learned of these dangerous and divisive comments, we see the Conservative Party indulging in talk of yet another leadership contest. That would mean the sixth prime minister in eight years, with the last two (and now possibly a third) unelected by the public.

These internal battles are a huge distraction amidst a backdrop of people forced to queue for hours to try and see an NHS dentist, families nervously watching as their bills and mortgages go up every month and sitting on what feels like a never-ending NHS waiting list. How can these problems be fixed when our country is being ruled by a party that is far more focused on looking inward than looking outwards to see the reality that so many people are facing?

The country should come first.

I know how many people are frustrated by the continued efforts by the Conservatives to hold onto power. On some days parliament is finishing as early as 4.45pm (rather than 7pm or 10pm) as a result of the government running out of ideas. I am equally as frustrated.

We all deserve so much better than this. We deserve a government fully focused on delivering for people up and down our country, not navel-gazing.

As always, please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any issues or concerns you would like to raise with me. I can be reached on [email protected] or on 01926 882006.

Matt Western

MP for Warwick and Leamington



Business Directory

From plumbers, to restaurants, we can provide you with all the info you need.


Weddings, Birthdays, Bereavements, Thank you notices, Marriages and more.


Find a career you'll love with our free career finder website.


Receive a weekly update to your inbox by signing up to our weekly newsletter.