A theatre director claims he was kicked off a London bus after its driver launched a vile racist and homophobic tirade at him and his boyfriend.
Omar Okai said the “humiliating” incident happened after he had enjoyed an evening out with his boyfriend in central London on Friday.
He said the couple were left “shocked and disgusted” after the driver challenged them with an apparently innuendo-laden remark after they boarded the bus at the rear.
The 51-year-old, from Bethnal Green, alleged that the driver told them: “I bet you like it in the backdoor” during the confrontation near Tottenham Court Road station.
Mr Okai and his Spanish partner Juan Salas Carranza, 36, have now formally complained to Transport for London and the police over the alleged incident.
“We put our hands out to get the bus but he looked at us and pointed at something and just drove on,” Mr Okai told the Standard.
“We caught up with the bus at another stop. The front doors were closed but people were on the bus. The back door was open so we got on and go straight to the front and put our Oyster cards on the machine.
“He then said, the front doors were closed for a reason. We apologised and said ‘but we have paid, is it ok?’
“He just kept repeating, ‘how long have you been using buses in this country?’ I made it very clear I am British but he kept repeating it. It was really aggressive, it was vile.
“He then said, ‘why did you use the backdoor?’. We again apologised and he said, ‘I bet you like it in the backdoor anyway.’
“I kind of stopped and said, ‘what do you mean’. He said, ‘you heard’.
“He then pressed the button on the top of his bus panel and made this announcement. He said ‘this bus is not going any further and people need to get off’.
“It was in such a nasty way. We got off the bus but realised other passengers stayed on. He then opened the front doors and allowed another lady to enter and then he drove off.”
Mr Okai, who runs his own theatre company, said: “You don’t have to call me a poof and a queer to be homophobic. This on a bus in your own country in 2016, that’s disgusting.”
In a letter to TfL, he added: “I would like an explanation, not just an apology, as I will be taking it further.
“This kind of behaviour is not acceptable in any shape or form in Great Britain and as a British citizen born here, I am not accepting it. My partnerand I were humiliated and intimidated, being made to leave the bus.
“In a multi-racial, poly-sexual society, this can’t be allowed to pass. I use the transport system day in, day out and have never been so insulted.”
Transport for London said they are investigating what happened.
A spokesperson said: “We are concerned to hear of this incident and are investigating it with Tower Transit, the operator of the 25 bus route.
“We expect the highest standard of public service from bus drivers.”
Bus operator Tower Transit have also been contacted for comment.
Mr Okai also reported the alleged incident, which happened at around 10pm on Friday, to the Metropolitan Police. Scotland Yard have been contacted for comment.
People have taken to social media to show their support for Mr Okai and applaud him for reporting the incident.