Conservative Muslim chair says he was expelled for questioning Boris Johnson's 'moral fitness': Report
The chairman of the Conservative Muslim Forum says he has been expelled from the group for "casting doubt on Boris Johnson's moral fitness" during an interview, ITV News reported.
Mohammed Amin, chairman of the UK political party's Muslim Forum since 2014, was removed by a disciplinary hearing late on Friday.
Last week on BBC Radio 4, Amin confirmed his intention to leave the party if current favourite for the top job Boris Johnson became party leader, ITV reported.
He said he believes Johnson does not have the "integrity" to be prime minister and that popularity is "not the test" in deciding who should lead the country.
Last year, the Muslim Council of Britain accused the Conservative Party of "giving license to bigotry" after it ruled that Boris Johnson had not broken party rules when he made derogatory remarks in a newspaper column about Muslim women who cover their faces.
Johnson, a former foreign secretary, provoked anger and accusations of Islamophobia after publishing an article in the Daily Telegraph newspaper in which he described the burqa - a veil that fully covers the face - as "oppressive".
Johnson also compared women who wear the niqab, which covers all of the face apart from a woman's eyes, to letterboxes and bank robbers.
Amin's interview sparked controversy when he mentioned Adolf Hitler and compared the German dictator's popularity in the 1930s to Johnson's now. "A lot of Germans thought that Hitler was the right man for them," he said.
Amin conceded that his reference to Hitler was "unfortunate" but said he was addressing a wider point that popularity should not be the primary determining factor when choosing the leader of a country.
After the interview, a disciplinary hearing was called and multiple sources told ITV News that Conservative Party Headquarters (CCHQ) had been in contact with the Conservative Muslim Forum about Amin's comments.
Confirming the news, the Conservative Muslim Forum said in a statement: "It was felt by the Executive Committee of the Conservative Muslim Forum that Mohammed Amin has breached the constitution of the Forum and brought the Conservative Party and the Forum into disrepute ... members present unanimously voted for Mohammed Amin to be expelled from membership of the Forum and as an office holder."
Amin told ITV News he was "disappointed" and that he believed questioning Johnson's integrity led to his removal.
CCHQ declined to comment when approached by ITV News.