Prince Harry was at the centre of a new race row last night after telling a black comic: “You don’t sound like a black chap.' The gaffe-prone royal made the remark to black comic Stephen K Amos at a comedy show. Amos was not amused.
Speaking on Five’s The Wright Stuff yesterday, Amos said the remark came as he lined up with other stars after the performance. He explained: “Harry said, ‘Hello, tell me, amusing… but you don’t sound like a black chap.”
As fellow panellist Lowri Turner gasped along with presenter Wright, Amos added: “I wanted to say, (putting on an accent) ‘How is I supposed to sound?’” Asked if the remark had been made in jest, he replied: “I hope it was.” But Turner scoffed: “That’s not the point.'
Harry’s latest blunder – after the televised birthday show We Are Most Amused – comes just a month after it emerged he described an Army squaddie as “our little paki friend”. It was also recently revealed that he, Charles and Prince William affectionately refer to an Indian polo club friend as “Sooty”.
Well-spoken Amos, from south-west London, generously put 24-year-old Harry’s comment down to a poor attempt at making banter.
But 'equality groups ', reports the Daily Mirror in the UK, were outraged. Naomi Byron, national secretary of Youth Against Racism in Europe, said: “Many young people will be disgusted by his remark – how is a black man meant to sound? But it is not just Prince Harry that is at fault. The aristocratic, rich circles he moves in obviously don’t have a problem with this kind of racist stereotyping.”
Former Commission for Racial Equality chairman Lord Herman Ouseley said: “It is very sad that Prince Harry thinks black people all talk in the same way. It just goes to show how ill-educated members of the upper classes can be.”
Labour MP Parmjit Dhanda added: “I hope he will see that black people can come in all shapes and sizes with a variety of dialects.”
Last night a Palace spokeswoman refused to comment. She said: “We wouldn’t be able to confirm whether any private conversation did or did not take place.” see