Prince William's godmother Susan Hussey quits over racist remarks to Black charity boss
Prince William's godmother has resigned from her duties at Buckingham Palace after racist comments were made towards a Black charity boss at an event on Tuesday.
Ngozi Fulani, the founder of the Sistah Space domestic abuse charity, revealed she was repeatedly asked by a member of staff where she “really came from”, including "which part of Africa".
Yahoo News UK has been told the royal aide is Lady Susan Hussey, 83, who was lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth II and subsequently retained as a lady of the household by King Charles.
She is also the Prince of Wales’s godmother.
Fulani, who is British, outlined the conversation in a Twitter post and described it as a “violation”.
She said the experience, which took place at an event about violence against women hosted by Camilla, the Queen Consort, will “never leave me”.
Prince William's spokesperson said the prince was "really disappointed" by the incident and that "racism has no place in our society".
The spokesperson added: "The comments were unacceptable, and it is right that the individual has stepped aside with immediate effect."
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Buckingham Palace said it took the incident “extremely seriously” and had investigated immediately.
Following the event, Fulani wrote on Twitter: "10 mins after arriving, a member of staff [...] approached me, moved my hair to see my name badge".
She said the rest of the event was a "blur".
She claims the staff member asked her seven times where she was from. The CEO initially replied saying, "Sistah Space", the women's charity she runs. Fulani further clarified that she and the organisation are "based in Hackney".
The CEO claims she was then asked: "No, what part of Africa are you from?"
Fulani says that she told the staff member four times that she is from the UK and of British nationality, eliciting replies such as: "No, but where do you really come from" and "I can see I am going to have a challenge getting you to say where you're from".
The CEO added "there was nobody to report it to" and that it "was such a shock to me and the other two women, that we were stunned into temporary silence.
"I just stood at the edge of the room, smiled and engaged briefly with who spoke to me until I could leave".
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Buckingham Palace said in a statement the aide had expressed her "profound apologies" and resigned from her honorary role, adding: “We take this incident extremely seriously and have investigated immediately to establish the full details.
“All members of the Household are being reminded of the diversity and inclusivity policies which they are required to uphold at all times.”
The Palace also said it had "reached out to Ngozi Fulani on this matter and are inviting her to discuss all elements of her experience in person if she wishes".
However, according to The Independent's race correspondent Nadine White, Fulani had not heard from the Palace and had received no apology.
A royal source subsequently said Buckingham Palace had reached out to "one of the organisations" Fulani is aligned with.
Fulani's account of the incident was corroborated by Mandu Reid, leader of the Women's Equality Party.
Reid wrote on Twitter: "I was right there. I witnessed this first hand. We were at an event that was supposed to celebrate our work. For people like [the staff member] people like us will never really belong here".
A follow-up tweet posted on the Sistah Space account said the group had no intention of revealing the name of the person involved, adding: "It is the system that needs to be revised [...] it serves no purpose to name and shame [them] it would make us just as bad. We prefer that this be handled kindly."
Fulani had been invited to the reception for the work she has done in raising awareness of the violence faced by women and girls.
The reception was part of the UN 16 days of activism against gender-based violence initiative. The Queen Consort gave a speech at the reception, during which she said of those in attendance that their work was "vital" and "evidence that we can have hope as we towards our goal of ending violence against women and girls".