UK

Boris Johnson says questioning a baby’s skin colour is just ‘human nature’

Boris Johnson in 2022 (Peter Byrne/PA)
Boris Johnson in 2022 (Peter Byrne/PA) Boris Johnson in 2022 (Peter Byrne/PA)

Former UK prime minister Boris Johnson has called the racism row surrounding the royal family “normal” and  “not remotely racist”.

The racism row has reared its head once more in the wake of Omid Scobie’s tell-all book, which hit the stands on Tuesday.

While the English version made no mention of who said what, a misprint in the recalled Dutch translation pointed the finger at two senior royals.

The revelation of the accused royals made headlines around the world and saw Dutch versions of the book pulled from shelves.

Royal visit to Africa – Day Three
Royal visit to Africa – Day Three The Duke and Duchess of Sussex hold their son Archie in 2019 (PA)

In a piece for the Daily Mail, Mr Johnson pointed out families usually wonder what a new, unborn baby may look like.

The Conservative MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip wrote: “To ask such questions, in anticipation of a happy event, is simple human nature.

“It is one of the greatest joys and ­mysteries of life that we have no real idea, in utero, what our children will look like … that, I expect, was exactly the kind of ruminative debate that the so-called royal racist was having.”

The former prime minister went on to use his op-ed to attack “wokery and cancel culture”, which he believes is at the heart of the latest royal fiasco.

He said: “Frankly, I neither know nor care which royal said something about Archie, but I am certain that he or she was not remotely racist.

“It’s time to stop all this nonsense, and re-draw the distinction between the ugliness of racism and prejudice — against which we have abundant statutes — and ordinary, innocent patterns of human thought and behaviour.”

Author Mr Scobie insists he never included any names in the original text.

He told BBC’s Newsnight that a “full investigation” will now be carried out into how the names appeared in the Dutch edition of his book.

Royal Variety Performance 2023
Royal Variety Performance 2023 The Prince and Princess of Wales were peppered with questions about the racism row on November 30 at the Royal Variety Performance (Aaron Chown/PA)

When asked if the “buck stops” with him, he replied: “It doesn’t stop with me because there are irresponsible people in this country that have broken the law and repeated names that should never have been repeated, should never be named.

“The book I wrote, the book I edited, the book I signed off on did not have names. So, I’m as frustrated as everyone else.”

It is understood Buckingham Palace is considering all options following the publication of the two names.

Buckingham Palace declined to comment when contacted by PA. Kensington Palace has also been approached for a comment.