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MP Godson laughs off racist magazine cover

PR dla Zagranicy
Roberto Galea 04.02.2015 14:00
Nigerian-born PSL Member of Parliament John Godson was not offended over an Angora cover calling him a ‘dark horse’.
The Angora cover has been controversial. Photo: Angora.com.plThe Angora cover has been controversial. Photo: Angora.com.pl

The cover of this week’s Angora has caused controversy by calling MP Godson a “dark horse” of the Polish People’s Party (PSL) following a high-profile move to the junior coalition member last week.

Godson wrote on Facebook that he “couldn’t stop laughing” at the cover, which showed him wearing a beret and speaking into a mobile phone. A speech bubble reads: “Piechociński! When do you plant bananas?”

Janusz Piechociński is the head of the PSL party.

“I'm not a dark horse of the People’s Party, although I found it funny. I do not know what the author had in mind,” Godson told Onet news website.

Critics have slammed the cover as racist.

Rafał Pankowski from the Never Again Association told TheNews.pl that “Associating people of African origin with bananas mirrors racist incidents seen at football matches in Poland.”

Pankowski compared the cover to taunts of monkey noises and bananas thrown at Polish-Nigerian football player Emmanuel Olisadebe.

This is not the first time Angora have run a controversial story. In 2011, the cover of the weekly showed two Hassidic Jews looking at Warsaw’s iconic Palace of Culture and Science, with one of them saying “Look son, all of this will be yours one day”.

Angora is not a small publication, and should show some compassion towards minorities in Poland,” Pankowski added.

Asked if the media should tone down their controversial covers following the Charlie Hebdo attacks, Pankowski said that while publications should be responsible not to offend anyone on the basis of their race or background, “freedom of speech should be safeguarded, but members of society should also be respected.” (rg)

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