Rocker Bob Geldof has stepped in to defend a British politician after he was accused of patronising police officers guarding the gates of Downing Street.
Conservative Member of Parliament (Mp) Andrew Mitchell resigned from his prestigious post as Government Chief Whip in the House of Commons in October, 2012 amid a growing scandal over an altercation outside the Prime Minister's home.
Mitchell has been accused of branding police officers standing guard "plebs" after they ordered him to get off his bicycle and walk through a pedestrian gate rather than use the main entrance.
The politician admits swearing at an officer but is adamant he never used the derogatory word "plebs", and he is suing a U.K. media group for libel over its report of the incident.
At the hearing at London's High Court on Tuesday (18Nov14), the judge was read a statement from Boomtown Rats rocker Geldof, who had dealings with Mitchell when the Mp was the U.K.'s International Development Secretary.
The I Don't Like Mondays hitmaker said he backed Mitchell as a "leader and advocate for the less fortunate" and insisted he believes the politician's account of the incident without "a single shred of doubt".
Geldof states, "I am used to being patronised by 'my betters'. There was no such nonsense from Mr. Mitchell. We became friends because beyond his qualities as a leader and advocate for the less fortunate, I thought he was a good man. We are an unlikely pair of friends.
"I came from a poor Irish, not particularly well-educated background and he does not. I am in fact 'a pleb' and he is not. Never once in all our time did he patronise me, talk down to me, behave in a superior manner to me, deride, insult or dismiss me or my opinions... He is open, frank, truthful, even when at times you wish to hear something other.
"I believe I have a perhaps justified reputation for swearing a bit. It has to be said that on occasion Andrew Mitchell was no slouch either. But not once did I ever hear him use the ridiculous and archaic expression 'pleb'! I have not a single shred of doubt that what Andrew Mitchell says is the truth."