Nigel Farage today again refused to apologise for his controversial ‘Breaking Point’ poster as he issued a rallying cry for Brexit.
At his final speech ahead of tomorrow’s momentous EU referendum, the Ukip leader said the vote was “the people versus the Establishment”.
But he contradicted his Ukip collegue Diane James, who last night claimed Farage had apologised for the poster which showed refugees walking through European countryside.
The poster has been condemned by politicians on both sides of the referendum campaign, and last night Ukip deputy leader Paul Nuttall said he would not have gone ahead with the image.
Speaking in Westminster this morning, Farage said: “I apologised for the timing and I apologise for the fact it was able to be used by those who wish us harm, but I can’t apologise for the truth.
He added: “The one poster that no one seems to talk about, the one really offensive and abusive poster in this campaign was put out by an organisation encouraging people from the ethnic minorities to vote, showing a skin-head menacing an elderly Asian lady and that was an absolute disgrace.”
Farage later told HuffPost UK the poster was "overtly racist" yet had received "virtually no criticism".
In his speech, Farage claimed that one of the “enduring images” of the referendum campaign was last week’s flotilla, which saw the Ukip leader do battle with Sir Bob Geldof on the River Thames.
“I thought the sight of a multi-millionaire former rock star shouting abuse and making a variety of hand gestures – some of which got published in the papers and some didn’t – and not directed just at me, that would have been ok, but directed at our fisherman, that image to me says it all. That actually it’s the vested interest, it’s the rich, it’s the big business, it’s those who are doing very nicely thank you against pretty much everybody else.”
Before Farage took to the stage – where he repeated his now customary gimmick of pulling out his passport and pointing out it has ‘European Union’ written on the top – Ukip MEP Steven Woolfe delivered a plea for Brexit.
He began by reading out a self-penned poem:
As the sun fell on scapa fell
I heard the news and final death knell
Of England's beaten heart
Destroyed from within
by its own kith and kin
Who sort to break it apart
Forever lost the dreams of the Burford three
Or those who signed at Magna Cartas tree
replaced by an elites favoured Aquis
Gone is Habeaus to the extremists warrant
So too Peterloos democratic torrent
For a Commission that knows not the word Free
Freeborn men and woman should cry
Oh why oh why oh why
Have they imprisoned us with their grand lie
Whole freedom, not part is the only way
To keep the forces of a despot away
And why so many were willing to die
The greed, the avarice of the few,
The blind eye turned by those that knew
And those who took their turn to play their part
They helped the sun fall on Scapa fell
Where I heard the news and final death knell
Of England's beaten heart