Pro-EU campaign accused of ‘promoting FUD’

Jon Moynihan, of the Vote Leave group, made the comments on BBC Radio 4's Today programme. Picture: Contributed

Jon Moynihan, of the Vote Leave group, made the comments on BBC Radio 4's Today programme. Picture: Contributed

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A PROMINENT board member of the group leading the campaign for Britain to leave the European Union has accused the pro-EU camp of ‘promoting FUD’.

Jon Moynihan, a former executive chairman of the PA Consulting Group, was speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, and claimed that the campaign for Britain to remain in the EU was ‘promoting FUD - fear, uncertainty and doubt’.

The acronym ‘FUD’ has been used in sales, marketing and politics since the 1970s, and is seen as a tactic to influence opinion by promoting negative or false information.

Most notably in recent years, critics of former US President George W Bush accused his supporters of using a ‘FUD-based campaign’ in the lead-up to the 2004 US presidential election.

Mr Moynihan’s comments were made as a Ukip spokesman appearing on the programme called on the anti-EU campaign to seek the support of ethnic minority voters who are ‘feeling the strain’ of migration from the EU.

MEP Steven Woolf said minority communities viewed the EU as something that ‘damages’ freedom and security.

Mr Woolf said his party leader, Nigel Farage, should be part of a ‘dream team’ of leading players in the Brexit campaign but it would be a ‘mistake’ for him to be the sole figurehead.

Mr Woolf, who will set out his views in a speech to the think-tank British Future, said the organisation’s research had highlighted concerns about immigration among ethnic minority voters.

He said: “They want prosperity, they want their culture protected, they want freedom and they also want to be secure. They see the European Union as something that damages that.”

Black, mixed race and Asian communities were “feeling the strain” of the current system, which favours EU citizens over migrants from other countries, he claimed.

He added: “Most people do see immigration as a positive thing and certainly we in Ukip - if you look at the policies I have developed over time - would actually agree with that. Our argument is that actually it is the European Union that is holding back the freedoms, it is actually the European Union’s principle on freedom of movement that is causing the lowering of wages.”

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