Cabinet Office confirms it’s reviewing Wiley’s MBE
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Cabinet Office confirms it’s reviewing Wiley’s MBE

Honours Forfeiture Committee tells the Campaign Against Antisemitism that an investigation has been launched into stripping the artist of the title

Jack Mendel is the Online Editor at the Jewish News.

Racist outburst: Wiley (Credit Image: © RMV via ZUMA Press)
Racist outburst: Wiley (Credit Image: © RMV via ZUMA Press)

The government is reviewing whether grime artist Wiley should be stripped of his MBE in wake of his antisemitic social media posts.

The Cabinet Office confirmed it is investigating whether the honour, awarded in 2018 for services to music, should be taken away.

More than 1,600 people signed Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA)’s petition to the Cabinet Office calling for it to be removed, while 30,000 people backed a separate Change.org bid.

The Cabinet Office’s Honours Forfeiture Committee confirmed to CAA that honours can be removed “for a variety of reasons including being found guilty of a criminal offence” and “behaviour that is deemed to bring the honours system into disrepute.”

A spokesperson said it is “aware of the issues that you have raised in relation to Richard Cowie, known as Wiley.”

This comes after communal groups successfully asked Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to take down his accounts in wake of a series of antisemitic social media posts.

A spokesperson for CAA said: “It is extremely important to us that Wiley is held to account for his actions”, adding that it is ” pleased that the Cabinet Office has confirmed that a case in respect of forfeiting Wiley’s MBE has been opened, and shall continue to monitor progress.”

Wiley, who is also under investigation by police and was dropped by his management company, said he would be willing to give the MBE up as he “never wanted it”. He told Sky News: “I never felt comfortable going to get it. Just look at Britain’s colonialism history.”

 

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