Outcry as Underground Worker Voices ‘Free Palestine’ Over Speaker System
On the afternoon of Saturday, October 21, a London Underground driver ignited a political firestorm by leading his passengers in a “free Palestine” chant while on route to a significant rally.
As the Tube train rumbled through the tunnels, the driver’s voice echoed, proclaiming “free free,” with fervent passengers responding in unison, “Palestine”. This act of solidarity came as approximately 100,000 demonstrators marched in central London, voicing their pro-Palestinian sentiments.
The driver’s controversial announcement didn’t end there. Delving deeper into the politically-sensitive topic of the Israel-Hamas war, he shared a message of unity and well-being, stating, “Hope you all have a blessed day today, and look after yourselves.”
However, not all received this act warmly. GB News presenter, Nigel Farage, demanded decisive action, stating unequivocally, “It is not the job of a TfL driver to make political statements on a public announcement. This man should be fired Sadiq Khan.” Farage’s sentiments were echoed by Paul Scully, Minister for London, who emphasised the importance of neutrality in such a crucial public service.
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Scully noted the delicate balance between the “horrific terrorist attacks by Hamas and the legitimate concerns of Palestinians in Gaza”, urging against inciting tension in London’s diverse community. He stressed, “Informed protest can bring change. But on-trend bandwagons can cause rifts and fear in communities, increasing the threat to the safety of some passengers travelling among those crowds.”
Tom Tugendhat, Security Minister, expressed his concern over the implications of such charged statements, commenting, “London’s Tubes are for everyone. Many will find this intimidating.” In response to the unfolding controversy, Transport for London swiftly announced the driver’s suspension, pending a thorough investigation. Source