DAN WOOTTON: As a royalist I hate to say it, but I’m beginning to doubt that Prince Charles has the capacity to become King Charles III without threatening the future of the British monarchy
How much longer are we going to turn a collective blind eye to the improper behaviour of Prince Charles that isn’t fit for a king?
For years, the heir’s allies have insisted the closer he comes to the throne, the more consciously he will adjust and tone down the more controversial aspects of his behaviour.
Sadly, mounting evidence makes it clear to anyone with half a brain that’s blatantly not the case.
If anything, Charles’s conduct is becoming more inappropriate as his mother enters the twilight years of her spectacular and historic reign.
As a proud monarchist who staunchly believes the Royal Family must remain politically neutral and whiter than white, I’m desperately worried about what could transpire upon the Queen’s death (which I hope and pray remains many years away).
In the last fortnight alone, we’ve seen Charles outrageously interfere in the government’s controversial but, in my view, sensible and humane plan to transfer some illegal Channel migrants to Rwanda in an important bid to stop the scourge of human traffickers.
In a stunningly brazen intervention, The Times newspaper was told the Prince of Wales had described the scheme as ‘appalling’ in private conversations, hours after the government won a High Court challenge designed to halt the deportations.
The leak of such a statement, possibly by allies of the prince, suggests Charles has learnt nothing over the years about why it’s essential he keeps his nosy, naive and idealistic beak out of sensitive political debates.
Prince of Wales shakes hands with the Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim al Thani, at his residence outside Doha, Qatar, at a meeting in 2013. He accepted large cash donations totalling three million euros from the former Qatari prime minister, the Sunday Times has reported
The newspaper claimed the prince personally accepted the cash donations for his charity the Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund between 2011 and 2015 from Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim who was prime minister of Qatar between 2007 and 2013
A source told the newspaper: ‘He said he was more than disappointed at the policy. He said he thinks the government’s whole approach is appalling. It was clear he was not impressed with the government’s direction of travel.’
And the prince’s office at Clarence House did not deny Charles disagreed with the policy but insisted that ‘he remains politically neutral’.
If you believe that, you’ll believe Meghan Markle is a selfless charity campaigner.
The meddling from Charles soon backfired, with the extraordinary report in yesterday’s Sunday Times revealing our next king had pocketed €1 million from a former Qatari Prime Minister and carried the cash in €500 notes in Fortnum & Mason carrier bags out of a meeting where no aides were present.
if true, that mind-boggling revelation alone poses so many questions about Prince Charles’s morality and sanity that it’s hard to fathom this bloke will soon be in charge.
I mean, what the hell was he thinking?
According to the report, which has also not been denied by Clarence House, Charles received €3 million in total from Qatar’s former Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, whose nickname is HBJ, to be deposited into the bank account of the Prince of Wales’s Charitable Fund, responsible for funding his Scottish estate and other pet projects.
While there is no suggestion the payments were illegal, they seem immoral and raise serious questions about a cash-for-access culture operating around our future head of state, especially after the bombshell last year that a close aide for Charles had secured a formal honour for a Saudi billionaire.
The Prince of Wales addressed invited guests at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Dinner, hosted by him and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at the Marriott Hotel in Kigali, Rwanda, last week
The Sunday Times reported that an adviser to Charles at the time, responsible for looking after some of the cash, said ‘everyone felt very uncomfortable about the situation’.
But the problem with royalty is that aides are often unwilling or unable to challenge their regal paymaster.
The Charity Commission is considering launching an investigation, which would be highly embarrassing for the prince.
I find it particularly ironic that holier-than-thou Charles, who is morally opposed to the Rwanda scheme, seems so prepared to cosy up to a Qatari regime responsible for egregious human rights violations, including the persecution of gay people, migrant workers and women.
It’s also astonishing to me that Charles still has an insatiable thirst for cash, even if he believes his fundraising is for worthy causes.
Surely, the small fortune he receives thanks to the Duchy of Cornwall is enough?
Worryingly, I fear Prince William may be starting to take his lead from daddy rather than his impeccable grandmother.
He recently hijacked the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee concert at Buckingham Palace to broadcast eco-catastrophe porn.
While protecting the environment is indeed a very important issue – and one that I, as an environmentalist since childhood, believes warrants serious attention – to suggest it’s not a political issue is delusional.
The Duchess of Cornwall joined Prince Charles on stage for his speech a the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. He thanked her for being there for the nation in good times and bad for 70 years
The UK’s highly consequential rush to Net Zero, far faster than equivalent western democracies, is going to hit working class families in the pocket and I believe will become a defining anti-establishment issue like Brexit in the years to come.
More so, I’d argue the Queen’s almost universal admiration and respect comes in large part from the fact she’s not warning us of our imminent demise at every available opportunity.
Our royals should represent hope, positivity and support at times of crisis, and must not fall into the trap of hysterical and politicised hyperbole, even on passion projects they deem to be part of their remit.
Charles has got everything he wanted before the Queen’s death, most notably a once unthinkable endorsement from his mother that his former mistress Camilla will become Queen Consort.
It’s time for him to grow up, stop the student politics and hire some adults who he knows will stand up to him the next time he proposes taking a million bucks in banknotes in a suitcase from a questionable foreign leader.
This is no longer a side show of a scandal because the very survival of the monarchy is at stake.
Charles, most of us are willing you to succeed – but, as it stands, you’re spectacularly effing this up.