Ngozi Fulani offers to go to Buckingham Palace to ‘raise awareness’ after race row

Ngozi Fulani says she remains 'dedicated to raising awareness around cultural competency' - Graeme Robertson/Guardian/eyevine
Ngozi Fulani says she remains 'dedicated to raising awareness around cultural competency' - Graeme Robertson/Guardian/eyevine

The domestic violence campaigner at the centre of a royal race row has said she will go to Buckingham Palace to raise awareness of “cultural competency”.

Ngozi Fulani, 61, said she was willing to go to the palace if it would help create positive change and “save lives”.

The charity director revealed last week that she had been subjected to an “interrogation” about her origins at a palace reception by Lady Susan Hussey, a former lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth II.

Lady Hussey resigned from her post as lady of the household for "deeply regrettable" comments about Ms Fulani's background.

Lady Susan Hussey resigned in the wake of the race row - Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images
Lady Susan Hussey resigned in the wake of the race row - Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Buckingham Palace said it had since made contact with Ms Fulani, while Lady Hussey is said to be keen to apologise directly. However, it is unclear whether any specific arrangements have been made.

In a statement released on Monday via her charity, Sistah Space, Ms Fulani revealed that since the incident had been brought to light, she and her team had come under “immense pressure” and received “horrific abuse” on social media.

“What took place at the event is now well-documented, and sadly is something that occurs on an all too regular basis,” she said.

“Incidents like this not only cause emotional harm to those involved but do also have wider repercussions within the community.

“I have experienced first-hand what happens when a black woman faces adversity and has to overcome additional barriers when trying to report it. This is at the heart of what we do at Sistah Space, and it has reiterated to me just how important the work we do is.

“I remain dedicated to raising awareness around cultural competency, and will go to Buckingham Palace, or anywhere else, if it will help raise positive change and save lives.

“It has been an emotional whirlwind and we now wish to take the time to pause, reflect and learn from these events.”

Ngozi Fulani, second left, at the Buckingham Palace reception with the Queen Consort - Kin Cheung/PA
Ngozi Fulani, second left, at the Buckingham Palace reception with the Queen Consort - Kin Cheung/PA

Ms Fulani has described feeling “violated” after Lady Hussey, the Prince of Wales’s godmother, quizzed her about where she was from at the event - organised to raise awareness of gender-based violence - last Tuesday, despite her making clear she was British.

She claimed Lady Hussey had moved her hair to see her name badge, before asking persistent questions about "where in Africa" her family was originally from.

She said she was "stunned to temporary silence", calling the conversation a "form of abuse" that left her struggling to "stay in a space that [she was] violated in".

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A spokesman for Buckingham Palace said at the time: "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."