Nigel Farage has hit the headlines many times over his 30 years in politics for his controversial views (Picture: James Gourley/Shutterstock)
Nigel Farage is the UK’s most controversial politician of the 21st century, and now he is set to entertain the masses by eating kangaroo balls and sticking his head into a bowl of creepy-crawlies on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here.
The ITV show, hosted by Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly, is reportedly paying the former UKIP leader and staunch Brexiteer a record-breaking £1.5million for entering the jungle alongside the likes of Sam Thompson, Jamie Lynn Spears, and Josie Gibson.
Farage will be making his first appearance in khaki tomorrow evening (November 19), but his journey into the jungle is already controversial.
Celebrities and fans alike took to social media to slam the broadcaster’s decision to add a man to their star-studded lineup who has hit the headlines time and time again over his 30-year career for remarks deemed racist and misogynistic.
One took to X, formerly Twitter, and said: ‘Absolutely sickened by the decision to put Farage in #ImACeleb. This isn’t “bants”, that man has incited so much hatred, racism and division in our country. I am physically disgusted.’
It’s well known, then, that Farage is a controversial figure. But let’s take a dive into his most unbelievable moments, just to refresh your memory before you start to feel too sorry for him nibbling on scraps in the jungle.
He is entering the I’m A Celebrity jungle tomorrow… (Picture: Rex)
Is Nigel Farage racist?
Over the years, Farage has certainly been accused of racism in his various remarks on immigration as UKIP leader and ‘Mr Brexit’.
In 2013, Farage said he supported Muslin immigrants who ‘integrate’ into UK society but – quoting former Australian Prime Minister John Howard – not those who are ‘coming here to take us over’.
A year later, in a 2014 interview on LBC, Farage said he felt ‘uncomfortable’ when he heard people speaking in other languages on London transport.
When LBC radio presenter James O’Brien followed that by asking why he objects to Romanian migrants but not Germans – like his wife – Farage retorted: ‘You know the difference.’
Farage also suggested he would be concerned living next to a house of Romanians.
That same year, Farage also blamed immigrants when he was over two hours late for an event, claiming they were clogging up the M4.
The former UKIP leader has previously made some very questionable comments (Picture: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images)
‘That has nothing to do with professionalism,’ he said of his tardiness. ‘What is does have to do with is a country in which the population is going through the roof, chiefly because of open-door immigration, and the fact the M4 is not as navigable as it used to be.’
In October 2014, Farage called for migrants who have tested positive for HIV not to be allowed into the UK.
Two months later, he defended a UKIP candidate for using the word ‘ch**ky’ to describe a Chinese person.
‘If you and your mates were going out for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?’ he asked.
Farage’s 2016 anti-immigration poster – which suggested the UK was at ‘breaking point’ due to migrants – was branded ‘vile’ by chancellor of the time George Osbourne, who said it ‘echoed’ Nazi propaganda.
Nigel Farage’s admiration for Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump
On his political idols, Farage previously said in 2014: ‘As an operator, but not as a human being, I would say Putin. The way he played the whole Syria thing. Brilliant.’
Since Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, Farage somewhat backtracked on his previous comments of admiration for the Russian dictator, in saying that Putin is not being ‘logical’ in the invasion.
‘Vladimir Putin is a nationalist Russian. He wants to get back – at least I thought he wanted to get back – the Russian-speaking areas [of Ukraine] into his country,’ he said.
‘Those provinces in Ukraine, well, they are Russian-speaking… I always thought we were dealing with someone very logical, but now I don’t think he is.’
He is a big fan of Donald Trump (Picture: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
He dubbed the invasion ‘abhorrent’ but also, calling it ‘predictable’, blamed Putin’s atrocities on the EU and NATO provoking him.
Farage has long voiced his support for Donald Trump, and was even the first British politician to meet the ex-President after his 2016 victory.
In the run-up to the US presidential elections of 2016, Farage said that if he could, he would vote for Donald Trump.
He later said in an interview that he ‘couldn’t be happier’ for Trump, while describing Barack Obama as a ‘loathsome individual’ and ‘creature’.
If that wasn’t enough of a stan, Farage declared the orange-hued Republican should win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Farage also praised Trump for ‘dominating’ Hillary Clinton like a ‘silverback gorilla’.
This is your timely reminder that Trump once said – of being a famous man – that you can just ‘grab’ women ‘by the pu**y’ and ‘they let you do it’.
Trump has been accused of sexual assault by dozens of women.
Nigel Farage’s comments on women
Farage later defended Trump’s ‘grab ’em by the pu**y’ comment, saying that ‘men say dreadful things sometimes’.
He added: ‘If all of us were caught out on what we’ve said on a night out after a drink, none of us would be here.’
In 2014 – perhaps Farage’s most vocal year, it seems – the UKIP leader said breastfeeding women should ‘sit in the corner’.
He also suggested that working mothers were ‘worth less’ than men, while explaining the gender pay gap.
‘If a woman with a client base has a child and takes two or three years off work, she is worth far less to the employer when she comes back than when she goes away because her client base cannot be stuck rigidly to her,’ he said.
On his own promiscuity – ew – Farage added: ‘Maybe it’s because I’ve got so many women pregnant over the years that I have a different view [of maternity leave].’
When Britain left the EU in 2016, Farage boasted that the campaign had been won ‘without a bullet being fired’ just a week after Labour MP Jo Cox was fatally shot.
The time his UKIP campaign plane crashed on election day
Perhaps one of Farage’s most famous moments came when his two-seater campaign plane crashed after his ‘Vote UKIP’ banner became entangled, causing the aircraft to nosedive on election day 2010.
Farage later admitted he thought he was going to die in the crash, from which he emerged with a fractured neck vertebrae, and broken ribs.
Also rather memorably, Farage has never actually succeeded in becoming a sitting MP after many failed attempts.
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