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Janey Godley dismissed concerns about old racist Tweets weeks before they got her sacked

Comedians Des Clarke and Janey Godley backing the See Me campaign, I Can Talk About Mental health Here, in Kelvingrove Museum and Art Galleries. (Marc Turner)
Comedians Des Clarke and Janey Godley backing the See Me campaign, I Can Talk About Mental health Here, in Kelvingrove Museum and Art Galleries. (Marc Turner)

Janey Godley claimed complaints about her old tweets were politically-motivated and “lost their potency” weeks before they got her sacked from fronting a Scottish Government public health campaign.

In June, the actress and comic admitted some of her social media activity in the past had been offensive but said complaints were motivated by her support for the SNP.

Last week, she was sacked from fronting a coronavirus “stop the spike” campaign after a number of old tweets emerged which included racist and prejudiced comments. She apologised and donated her £12,000 fee to charity, saying: “I have to stand up and own my offensive, hurtful language and apologise.”

However, in June, Godley, who was once a Tory, dismissed her critics claiming they were right-wing unionists who didn’t like her politics.

She was criticised for historic social media posts when she became the face of Zero Waste Scotland’s litter campaign this year.

Speaking on her podcast in June, Godley said: “You can’t oppose freedom of speech but only apply it to me because you don’t like my politics.”

She added: “I remember saying things 10 years ago I wouldn’t say now, and quite rightly so. It’s words I wouldn’t use now, but it is what it is.”

She also said Tory voters repeatedly complaining to companies about her comments would be ignored because they have “lost their potency”.

Godley was also dropped by Zero Waste Scotland last week and has also withdrawn from her role in a Beauty And The Beast pantomime in Aberdeen.

Nicola Sturgeon, who previously described Godley, who posted spoof voice-overs of the first minster’s daily Covid briefings during lockdown, as her alter-ego, was forced to defend the decision to hand the comic a £12,000 job as the face of a Covid ad campaign.

“These things happen,” she said. “The important thing is that action has been taken, Janey has apologised, I think she’s been pretty straightforward and dignified in her apology.”