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Minister G Sudhakaran apologises for racial slur against World Bank official

Minister G Sudhakaran apologises for racial slur against World Bank official

Thiruvananthapuram: PWD minister G Sudhakaran Thursday expressed regret and apologised to a senior World Bank official against whom he had recently made a racist remark.

In a letter to Bernard Aritua, the World Banks senior infrastructure specialist associated with the Kerala State Transport Project, Sudhakaran said his intent was not racial and it was not to insult him.

"I express regret and apologise for the old African Anthropological word in my speech at Kasaragod... Kindly accept my regret," the minister said.

Addressing a function at Kasaragod recently, the minister had criticised the official, calling him by the objectionable word to describe a Black person.

He had reportedly said the official was from the African-American race to which former US President Barrack Obama also belonged.

"... World Bank means Amercia. Before America was born, Kerala had existed. There is no need to scare us saying the World Bank loan will be withheld for Kerala State Transport Project, which was going at a slow pace due to alleged corruption.

"Officials of the World Bank are responsible for the tardy pace of the project. World Bank team leader is an African-American and belongs to the race of former US President Barrack Obama," he had said.

After the state government reportedly received a communication from the World Bank official objecting to the use of that word, the embarrassed minister said he was "not aware" that it was banned in the US.

"...Sincerely, I did not know if it is not to be used. We use it in the assembly also and I express my unconditional apology," the minister told television channels.

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