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21st Apr 2018

Prince Charles in racism row after saying that a woman ‘didn’t look like she was from Manchester’

Wil Jones

The comments did not go down well.

The Prince of Wales is at the centre of a racism row after joking that a woman from Manchester did not look like she was from the city.

Writer Anita Sethi penned an piece for The Guardian, where she described the incident. It happened at the Commonwealth People’s Forum in London, as part of the build-up to a Commonwealth heads of government meeting.

She was holding had written an essay in a collection about the exploitation of people under the British Empire, and told the Prince that her mother was from Guyana. Then the conversation went:

“And where are you from?” asked the prince.

“Manchester, UK,” I said.

“Well, you don’t look like it!” he said, and laughed. He was then ushered on to the next person.

This week it was announced Charles would succeed the Queen as head of the Commonwealth, which has led Sethi to question whether someone who says that should be given the role:

“That the mooted next leader of an organisation that represents one-third of the people on the planet commented that I, a brown woman, did not look as if I was from a city in the UK is shocking.”