A member of the British royal family’s household has left her role after making “unacceptable and deeply regrettable” comments about race and nationality to a woman at a grand reception at Buckingham Palace, a spokesperson said on Wednesday.
Ngozi Fulani, who was born in Britain and works for a domestic abuse support group, wrote on Twitter that the royal aide had repeatedly asked her: “What part of Africa are you from?” when she attended an event hosted by King Charles’s wife Camilla, the queen consort, on Tuesday.
“We take this incident extremely seriously and have investigated immediately to establish the full details. In this instance, unacceptable and deeply regrettable comments have been made,” a Buckingham Palace spokesperson said in a statement.
The spokesperson said the individual concerned, referred to by Fulani as Lady SH, wanted to apologise for the hurt caused and had stepped aside from her honorary role with immediate effect.
Neither Fulani nor the palace identified the aide in question, with the spokesperson saying the individual would not be offering any comment. British media said it was Lady Susan Hussey, the 83-year-old godmother of Charles’s son and heir Prince William.
William’s spokesperson said he was really disappointed to hear about the incident.
“Obviously, I wasn’t there, but racism has no place in our society,” the spokesperson said. “The comments were unacceptable, and it is right that the individual has stepped aside with immediate effect.”