Petition launched for Derbyshire councillor to be sacked after saying Boris Johnson ‘deserves’ coronavirus

Thousands of people have signed a petition calling for a Derbyshire councillor to be sacked after she said on Facebook that coronavirus-stricken Boris Johnson ‘completely deserves this’.
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An online petition started yesterday has already gained more than 3,500 signatures calling for councillor Sheila Oakes, who represents Heanor East on Amber Valley Borough Council, to be removed from her post.

Councillor Oakes, who is also mayor for Heanor, posted on Facebook: “Sorry, he completely deserves this and he is one of the worst PMs we’ve ever had.”

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The Prime Minister – who was admitted to St Thomas’ Hospital in London on Sunday night – was moved to intensive care on Monday (March 6) after being given oxygen earlier in the day.

Sheila Oakes has apologised for posting this comment on FacebookSheila Oakes has apologised for posting this comment on Facebook
Sheila Oakes has apologised for posting this comment on Facebook

Mike Bunce started the petition on, which reads: “Nobody should wish this on any other person, she has shown total disrespect for him, his family and everyone that has contracted this horrible life threatening virus.

“She is not fit for the office position that she holds and must be removed immediately as no apology is acceptable.”

At the time of writing, the petition has amassed 3,537 signatures in the 19 hours since it was started.

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Chris Emmas-Williams, the leader of Amber Valley Labour group, told the Derbyshire Times the whip had now been removed from Ms Oakes, meaning she will no longer sit as a Labour councillor but as an independent.

He said: “I am appalled and very disappointed by the comments Coun Oakes has made, there is no place in politics or our daily lives for saying things that are a personal attack on someone.

“The Government legislation does not allow for a councillor to be sacked but I can assure everyone that due process will follow with a full investigation by the Labour Party.

“Meanwhile my group and myself wish the Prime Minister and all who are suffering this terrible disease a speedy recovery and love and solidarity to all their families.

“I’ve not made the comments but I feel as leader of the Labour group I have to apologise as well to Boris Johnson and his family and we wish him well.”

Coun Oakes has been contacted for comment.