Not so lovely jubbly

David Jason rapped over Pakistani joke

Sir David Jason has been criticised after making a joke deemed racist on live radio.

On Absolute Radio’s Christian O’Connell show yesterday, the Del Boy star said: ‘What do you call a Pakistani cloakroom attendant? Mahatma Coat.’

The gag was met with a stunned silence, before Sir David moved on – but no apology was aired at the time.

However, O’Connell did warn the 69-year-old actor: ‘No more jokes like that’.

The joke was subsequently removed from the show’s podcast, while Sir David issued an apology though his spokeswoman.

She said: ‘He is really sorry and distressed that that joke upset people. He thought it was nothing more than a light hearted joke and doesn't see it as racist but is naturally very, very sorry that people did.’

Mohammed Shafiq, of Muslim youth group The Ramadhan Foundation, told the Daily Mail: ‘These are inappropriate remarks about a stereotype that may have held a little water in the Fifties and Sixties but is not true to today. Many top jobs in this country are held by British Muslims, from lawyers, to doctors, politicians and businessmen. David Jason needs to reflect on this.’

A spokesman for Absolute Radio said: 'The comments made by David Jason were unacceptable and Christian O’Connell distanced himself from them live on air.

'To minimise any offence amongst our listeners we also edited the comments from the Breakfast Show podcast.

'We consider the views of our listeners to be very important and have received no complaints about these comments. David Jason has already apologised.'

The station added that O'Connell would apologise on tomorrow's show.

Published: 25 Mar 2009

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