A WINCHESTER City Councillor who is being linked to an allegedly racist Twitter account is now listed as an independent.

As previously reported, Judith Clementson is under investigation in relation to the account @Clem205 which has included Islamophobic comments. Conservative Central Office suspended her from the party.

She is now shown as an independent on the city council website – a change that was made between the start of the month and July 6.

In an email to fellow councillors, published in another local newspaper, she turned on her party’s response to now Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s description of Muslim women in burkas as looking ‘like letter boxes’ in a Daily Telegraph column in 2018.

She said: “The Conservative Party, presumably protecting its own position, has judged and condemned me without trial, as it were, and I am less than impressed with their handling of this matter especially as our prime minister, after his gaffe about “letter boxes” appears not to have been suspended from the party!”

She continued: “I do not intend to deny or admit that the private account Duffy Mac @Clem205 is my account but since I concur with the sentiments expressed, I am happy to own it!

“That said, it is important to note that any tweet taken out of context is often misjudged.”

This comes after former Tory councillor Kim Gottlieb, who is now a Lib Dem, sent Cllr Caroline Horrill a letter, highlighting that Cllr Clementson was still listed as a Conservative during the first months of the investigation.

The letter said: “The need for the council to cut out prejudice firmly and promptly should unite us and not be a party-political issue.

“However, by failing to address the conduct of one of your councillors which would have been well known long before the expose of more than three months ago, you have turned it into one and invited a charge of disrepute against the council and against yourself that talk is cheap.”

The situation is being investigated by the national Conservative party headquarters in London. The overall decision is out of the control of the local party.

In a letter to the Chronicle, printed in full on page 22, Neil Lander-Brinkley, chairman of the Meon Valley Conservative Association, explains this. “Your readers can be re-assured that I and my fellow officers in this association have been in contact with those carrying out the work, with the clear aim of ensuring that the process is completed as soon as possible,” he wrote.