Yorkshire-born Baroness Warsi says Tory discrimination review does not go far enough

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Dewsbury-born Tory peer Baroness Warsi has said her party's review into its handling of complaints of discrimination and prejudice does not look at how badly the problem has been dealt with.

The former Co-Chairwoman of the Conservative Party also said the appointment of Professor Swaran Singh to lead the review does not "bode well".

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi at her family's bed manufacturers in Ravensthorpoe near Dewsbury. Picture: Tony Johnson.

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi at her family's bed manufacturers in Ravensthorpoe near Dewsbury. Picture: Tony Johnson.

The Muslim Council of Britain has already criticised the appointment and reiterated its calls to hold an inquiry specifically into Islamophobia within the party.

The Tories said Prof Singh would look at how it could improve its procedures and ensure "any instances are isolated and that there are robust processes in place to stamp them out".

Baroness Warsi told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "First of all I can actually live with the fact that the inquiry is broader than Islamophobia.

"I think what became apparent to me, certainly in the last few months, was that there was incidents of anti-Semitism and other forms of racism, so in a way I think having a broader inquiry may actually get to the hub of the issue."

She said it is an inquiry to look at how the party can improve their processes, adding: "So there's no look at what has actually gone on, there's no look at the extent of the cases, there's no detail of how bad the problem has been and how badly it's been dealt with.

"It's almost a sense of 'What's happened has happened, let's kind of move on from that, and let's just make sure we get it right in the future'."

She added: "Having read Swaran Singh's views, and I wasn't aware of him before yesterday's announcement, I'm afraid that it doesn't bode well."

Boris Johnson originally promised an independent inquiry into Islamophobia in the party when he was campaigning to be Tory leader last summer.

The commitment was later widened to cover all forms of discrimination and prejudice.

Announcing the appointment of Prof Singh - currently the Professor of Social and Community Psychiatry at Warwick University - party chairman James Cleverly said they were committed to stamping out "unacceptable abuse".

The move comes after the Prime Minister apologised during the General Election campaign for "all the hurt and offence" that had been caused to the Muslim community by Islamophobia within the party.

While Labour came under pressure during the election over its failure to deal with anti-Semitism, the Tories were accused by the Muslim Council of Britain of "denial, dismissal and deceit" when it came to Islamophobia.

Mr Johnson has been widely criticised for past remarks likening Muslim women who wear the veil to "bank robbers" and "letter boxes".