Augustine Chukwuma Obodo, on Friday led a pro-Donald Trump protest to counter the protest march against the visit of the U.S. President to the UK.
Obodo, the leader of the Friends of Trump UK group was among dozens of protesters who turned out outside The Silver Cross pub wearing his red ‘Make America Great Again’ (MAGA) baseball cap.
The Nigerian was prominent among the crowds as he was seen enthusiastically arguing the President Trump’s case with the anti-Trump supporters present at the pub.
Obodo said he loves “everything” about Trump and was representing “Friends of Trump UK”
“They are surprised to see a black man as a Trump supporter,” he said.
One of the anti-Trump protesters pointed her finger through the police barrier at Obodo saying: “Excuse me, what’s a black guy doing there?”
The small enclave of the pro-Trump supporters were however, hit by waves of verbal abuse, and even a few moments of violence, as they made their stand for the visiting U.S. president amid widespread protests in London.
The group was quickly surrounded by anti-Trump protesters and a circle of police who tried to keep the peace.
Trump supporters chugged beer and sang pro-Trump football chants, waved UK and U.S. flags and threw back counter-slogans at the glowering protesters who accused them of being fascists and Nazis.
“Nazi scum, off our streets,” the anti-Trump crowd yelled, but they were countered by chants of “Trump, Trump, Trump.”
While a tense truce held for the most part, one protester broke through the police cordon and hit a Trump supporter before being dragged away.
Another Trump supporter James Goddard said: “We’re here to show that President Trump is welcome.”
He accused the protesters of ignoring controversial figures such as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and others and being brainwashed by the mainstream media.
Later, another anti-Trump protester tried to break through, but was intercepted by police and thrown up against the wall.
Trump supporters also chanted in support of Tommy Robinson, a controversial right-wing activist who was jailed last month after filming outside a court room. A pro-Robinson rally is planned for Saturday.
“Tommy’s not coming home,” one Trump and Robinson opponent yelled at them.
Avi Yemini, of the Australian Liberty Alliance, said he had come to support Trump.
“He stands for freedom, he stands for everything that’s right in the world,” he said, then gestured toward the protesters. “These people, they hate freedom.”
“I questioned them today at the blimp and I was called a Nazi,” he said. “I’m wearing a kippah on my head and I was called a Nazi.”
Police presence ramped up and kept distance between pro- and anti-Trump supporters, but it didn’t stop a few bottles being thrown from the anti-Trump side.
Despite being massively outnumbered, the pro-Trump enclave didn’t appear to be spooked by the hundreds of anti-Trump protesters hurling abuse at them. (NAN)