A landlady has hit headlines in London after allegedly rejecting an African tenant with a racist remark that her house is “only for European people”.
Ebrima Mboob, whose origin is Gambia, told The Sun that the landlady identified as Elina Vimbsone couldn’t rent him a double room because he hails from Africa.
According to the 24-year-old studying at the University of the Arts London (UAL), Ms Vimbsone complained that the food Nigerian people cook “makes the house smell”.
In a screenshot sent out to the media, Ms Vimbsone had initially agreed to have Mr Mboob tour the property but declined upon learning that he was black.
“Oh, just saw your profile, it’s only for European people… sorry mate (sic),” the message reads.
Seeing that the student had been offended by the racist remark, she wrote, “We are not racist or smt just to be honest, I have friends from Nigeria and all house smell what they cook [sic].”
In the UK, racial discrimination is unlawful under the Equality Act 2010.
Also, denying someone the right to rent property on the basis of race is listed as discrimination by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).
Mr Mboob told the media that he found it absurd that he was denied a house on the basis that he was African adding that it was the highest form of discrimination he has ever seen.
“Growing up in England, I’ve experienced all types of racism, but this was the first time that I’ve experienced something this absurd,” he said.
“I wasn’t expecting her to even ask me about my background as I didn’t think it was relevant and she even had the nerve to say it wasn’t racist.”
He added that because of Ms Vimbsone’s comments, he was nervous cooking African food in his new house for fear that his new roommates might have a similar view.
“I’ve just moved in with new housemates and I’ve developed serious anxiety about cooking around them in case they hate the smell too, ” he said.