It seems the trend of giant, inflatable mock-ups of politicians is taking hold.
After a bright orange baby Trump flew over London during the US President’s visit, protestors have now been given permission to fly a bikini-clad inflatable of London mayor, Sadiq Khan, over Westminster.
The stunt is to highlight the protesters’ unhappiness with the current mayor and campaigners have so far raised over £58,000 in support of their protest.
On a Crowdfunder page set up by Yanny Bruere, campaigners say:
In light of the Donald Trump ‘Baby Trump’ ballon being allowed to fly over London during his visit to the U.K., let’s get a ‘baby Khan’ one and see if FREE SPEECH applies to all and whether or not Mr Khan and the London assembly will also approve this. [sic]
Under Sadiq Khan, we have seen crime sky rocket to unprecedented levels. People in London don’t feel safe and they aren’t safe, 81 murders this year alone! Khan Out.
Any surplus money raised will be used for a continuing campaign to remove Sadiq Khan from office and also for defending free speech which is constantly under attack.
The inflatable Khan is 29 feet long, and will fly over Parliament square on Saturday, September 1.
— Yanny (@YannyBruere) August 21, 2018
The balloon has been approved by City Hall, the police and air traffic controllers NATS, reports BBC.
The inflatable can be seen sporting a very fetching yellow bikini, apparently in a nod to the ‘Beach Body Ready’ advert Khan banned in 2016.
The Greater London Authority city operations team have given permission for the balloon to fly between 9.30am and 11.30am BST.
A spokesperson for the mayor said:
As always, City Hall has been working in very close coordination with the Metropolitan Police and other key agencies to ensure this protest is able to be carried out in a safe and secure way.
While an NATS spokesperson said:
Following a thorough evaluation, we are satisfied that the balloon will have no impact on normal air traffic operations.
The Met Police has also approved the flight and accordingly air traffic control permission has been granted.
Wow! Tremendous win for #TrumpBaby supporters! This is BIG news that nobody saw happening – I am going on a World Tour! Wherever little Donald goes, I will be close behind. There is so much good to do, the world needs #TrumpBaby! https://t.co/aZXE1uREl0? pic.twitter.com/3rkd21GMhL
— Trump Baby (@TrumpBabyUK) June 27, 2018
Earlier this year, mayor Khan gave permission for an inflatable version of Donald Trump to fly over the capital during his visit to the city.
In a similar, crowdfunded campaign, the ‘Trump Baby’ flew over Parliament square gardens in protest of the president’s policies, which coincided with the ‘Stop Trump’ march which took place in central London.
Activist Leo Murray, one of the campaigners behind the protest, told Sky News at the time:
We didn’t get off to the best start with the Mayor’s office over this, who originally told us that they didn’t recognise Trump Baby as legitimate protest.
But following a huge groundswell of public support for our plan, it looks like City Hall has rediscovered its sense of humour. Trump Baby will fly!
While this new protest in inflatable form has been approved, it’s yet to be seen how much of a sense of humour City Hall has about it all…
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.