Lady Susan Hussey, the confidant of Queen Elizabeth II and godmother to Prince William, has resigned from her role as senior palace aide after asking a Black visitor what part of Africa she was from during a reception at the palace.
According to Sky News, Hussey was having a conversation with Ngozi Fulani, chief executive of Sistah Space. Sistah Space is a community-based non-profit created to bridge the gap in domestic abuse services for African-heritage women and girls.
Fulani, who is a Black woman, tweeted about the experience writing, “Lady SH, approached me, moved my hair to see my name badge” and then insisted on asking her “what part of Africa are you from.”
During the conversation, Fulani repeatedly told Lady Hussey that she was British, but Hussey continued to press Fulani about her nationality.
“No, but where do you really come from, where do your people come from?” asked Hussey. “‘My people’, lady, what is this?” Fulani responded.
The conversation continued with Hussey probing about Fulani’s nationality and Fulani responding by assuring the Lady she was British. A Kensington Palace spokesperson condemned Hussey’s actions calling them unacceptable.
“Obviously, I wasn’t there, but racism has no place in our society. The comments were unacceptable, and it is right that the individual has stepped aside with immediate effect,” the spokesperson said.
The palace has also said they have reached out to Fulani and said Hussey deeply regrets her use of words.
“In this instance, unacceptable and deeply regrettable comments have been made. We have reached out to Ngozi Fulani on this matter, and are inviting her to discuss all elements of her experience in person if she wishes.”
“In the meantime, the individual concerned would like to express her profound apologies for the hurt caused and has stepped aside from her honorary role with immediate effect.”
The palace also responded by saying the concerning issues raised around race would be addressed privately.
“All members of the household are being reminded of the diversity and inclusivity policies which they are required to uphold at all times.”
But according to Fulani, she hasn’t spoken to anyone from the palace.
“Conservations need to be had with the relevant people so this kind of thing doesn’t happen again,” said Fulani.