Damon Albarn urges U.K. government to be more 'caring' in wake of Grenfell Tower fire19th Jun 17 | Entertainment News
Damon Albarn has called on the British government to "step up to its responsibilities" after the Grenfell Tower fire.
The Blur and Gorillaz frontman issued a touching tribute to victims while urging the government to view the disaster as a "turning point" in their management of the social housing crisis.
A fire in the west London tower block spread rapidly through its 24-storeys in the early hours of Wednesday (14Jun17). Since then the government and the local authority have faced intense criticism for their slow response to the disaster.
Albarn spoke out in a message on BBC Radio 4 programme The World This Weekend, criticising landlords and property developers and implying that the deadly fire, which police are predicting has claimed 79 lives, was a result of political failure and the "brutal" gentrification of the area.
"During the last 30 years I've witnessed a brutal programme of gentrification around here. I've seen the way communities have been marginalised by greedy landlords and property developers," he told the BBC. "And the way our successive governments have encouraged this dilution and some would have say have broken their elected social contract with the people of London.
"What happened at Grenfell is still unfolding but this surely has to be a turning point. This has to be the moment where our government steps up to its responsibilities.
"No more scare tactics, no more division, just an honest, practical, caring governance."
The 49-year-old musician spoke out in a bid to "highlight the voices that must be listened to", after he first watched the news unfold while in Warsaw, Poland.
Albarn has long had roots in the area after moving up from Essex, living and making music in local studios before building his own, calling it "the kind of place that brought me to West London 30 years ago."
"It's a place where there's a real community always evolving, always multicultural with its heart... I can't imagine what horrors the residents are going through," he added.
© WENN Newsdesk 2017