An MP discovered responsible of racial abuse has introduced he’ll stand down on the subsequent election.
Bob Stewart, who has represented the London constituency of Beckenham since 2010, revealed his choice in a short assertion on X, previously Twitter, which made no reference to the latest court docket case.
Following his conviction, the 74-year-old surrendered the Conservative whip whereas he thought-about a attainable attraction.
He presently sits as an unbiased MP within the House of Commons.
Mr Stewart mentioned in a put up on the social media platform: “Serving Beckenham as its member of Parliament for 13 years has been an honour and privilege.
“I am incredibly grateful to everyone who has given me this opportunity.
“However, it’s time for a brand new candidate, so I can’t be looking for re-election on the subsequent election.”
The geographical boundary of his Beckenham constituency is anticipated to be modified on the subsequent common election following a overview geared toward equalising inhabitants sizes throughout the seats at Westminster.
A brand new constituency of Beckenham and Penge has been proposed.
Earlier this month, Mr Stewart was discovered responsible at London’s Westminster Magistrates’ Court of racially abusing an activist by telling him to “go back to Bahrain”.
The former military officer, who served as a United Nations commander in Bosnia, was fined £600, with extra authorized prices bringing the overall to £1,435.
The court docket heard the MP had grow to be concerned in a confrontation with a protester outdoors the Foreign Office’s Lancaster House in Westminster in December 2022.
He had been attending an occasion hosted by the Bahraini embassy when Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei shouted: “Bob Stewart, for how much did you sell yourself to the Bahraini regime?”
During an ensuing row, Mr Stewart mentioned: “Go away, I hate you. You make a lot of fuss. Go back to Bahrain.”
He additionally instructed Mr Alwadaei: “You’re taking money off my country, go away.”
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While highlighting Mr Stewart’s “immense positive character”, chief Justice of the Peace Paul Goldspring mentioned: “I accept he is not racist per se, but that is not the case against him.
“Good males can do dangerous issues.”
Mr Stewart told the court he was “not a racist” and that it had been “extraordinarily offensive” for the demonstrator to suggest he was “corrupt”.
Referring to the cost, he mentioned: “That’s absurd, it’s totally unfair, my life has been, I don’t want to say destroyed, but I am deeply hurt at having to appear in a court like this.”
Mr Stewart had argued his “honour was at stake in front of a large number of ambassadors”.
The navy veteran, who was stationed in Bahrain in 1969, mentioned he’s a “friend” of the Middle Eastern nation.
A crowdfunding web page arrange by Brendan Clarke-Smith, the Conservative MP for Bassetlaw, to cowl Mr Stewart’s superb and any additional authorized prices has already raised greater than £18,000.
Mr Stewart joins a rising listing of Tory MPs who’ve introduced they won’t stand on the subsequent common election, anticipated subsequent 12 months.