Councillor challenged and asked; ‘Can I be your slave’

A Haverfordwest man has challenged a local councillor accused of racist slavery comments, asking if he would like him to be his slave.

Haverfordwest man – and African American – Randell Turner has reacted with shock at a recent recording where Councillor Andrew Edwards of the town’s Prendergast ward is alleged to have said every white man should have a black slave.

Conservative county councillor Andrew Edwards is claimed to have made the comment in a recording, which it is said was then sent to Pembrokeshire County Council’s monitoring officer.

He has since withdrawn from the political group and referred himself to the Ombudsman.

Cllr Edwards, a former magistrate and a school governor, is also now listed as not belonging to any political group, with reports he has been suspended from the party.

It is understood that Cllr Edwards was identified by his voice.

Welsh publication Nation Cymru reported that several people had identified Cllr Edwards from his voice, transcribing the recording as saying: “Nothing wrong with the skin colour at all.

“I think all white men should have a black man as a slave, or black woman as a slave, you know.

“There’s nothing wrong with skin colour, it’s just that they’re lower class than us white people, you know.”

The context of the recording itself is not yet known.

Sharing a TikTok video expressing his feelings, Randell said he was “appalled and disgusted to live in a county where this man held three positions of stature and he feels it’s okay to think that every white man needs a slave.”

In his impassioned but dignified response to the alleged comments, he asks: “So, Mr Edwards, I’m gonna ask you: Can I be your slave?

“Would you like me to come to yours in shackles and use me?

“Would that be okay with you?”

Mr Turner then calls on Cllr Edwards to resign, warning that otherwise there will be no alternative other than to hold a peaceful demonstration in the town.

He finished: “Sir, you have brought shame, not only on your own family, but this whole entire county.”

Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, Randell said: “The reason I feel so strongly about this is my family were used as slaves and being brought up in Pembrokeshire I understand how it feels to be a minority.

“I feel this story needs wider distribution to prevent people in these positions thinking they can get away with this behaviour. It is not acceptable and should be portrayed as more serious than it currently is.”

Cllr Edwards, who became a councillor after last year’s elections, neither confirmed nor denied the allegation when previously asked by the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

Instead, he confirmed a previously-issued written statement which said: “I am aware of such serious allegations being made against me.

“This is why I have self-referred to the Public Services Ombudsman for an independent evaluation.”

Cllr Edwards, a self-employed hairdresser, licensee of a Swansea pub and restaurant, and a Freemason, added: “It is now in the hands of legal experts and the Ombudsman.

“It would be unfair on the process for me to comment now.”

Cllr Edwards was given the opportunity to respond to the issues raised by Mr Turner.

A Pembrokeshire County Council spokesman has previously said: “We are aware of an allegation being made and have referred the matter to the Ombudsman. It would be inappropriate to comment further at this stage.”

It is expected any decision on a formal investigation by the Ombudsman will take several weeks, with the matter either referred to the county council’s own standards committee or to the Adjudication Panel for Wales.


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