Black Lives Matter Protesters Chanted 'Munira Mirza Must Go' This Weekend

Mirza – who's said institutional racism is "perception more than a reality" – was chosen by Boris Johnson to lead the government's commission on racial inequality.
21 June 2020, 5:40pm
london black lives matter protest 21 june

For the second day this weekend, Black Lives Matter protests were held around the UK. In Leeds, thousands of peaceful protesters gathered in Woodhouse Moor, while hundreds marched from Hyde Park to Westminster in London.

This week, protesters have chanted, "Munira Mirza must go," after the political advisor – who has voiced scepticism about institutional racism and written articles railing against diversity policies – was chosen by Boris Johnson to lead a commission on racial inequality.

On Saturday, Imarn Ayton, an actress and a leader of the London BLM demonstrations, demanded a meeting with the Prime Minister, saying, "Everyone else seems to be in contact with me, except for Boris, so I would like a conversation."

"We protest or you listen," she added. "We want equality – to be treated fairly. That is all that we ask for, and for justice for those who have been harmed […] Munira Mirza must go. She is someone who does not believe in institutional racism, which is exactly why we marched the last two weeks – to abolish institutional racism."

Last weekend, demonstrations in the capital were postponed because of the threat of a far-right presence, which materialised in the shape of thousands of "statue defenders" getting drunk, punching photographers, spitting on picnickers, starting fights and urinating next to memorials. Groups of a similar demographic have shown up at protests in Glasgow this past week, leading Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to tweet on Wednesday, "Disgraceful scenes in Glasgow tonight. Racist thugs shame Scotland."

Today, Johnathan Williams was in London to photograph protesters marching down Oxford Street.