Strictly Come Dancing star speaks out on totally unacceptable abuse

Strictly: Janette Manrara ‘gutted’ to see Oti and Ugo leave the show

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Ugo Monye has revealed some Strictly Come Dancing contestants have received abuse during their time on the BBC dance show. The former rugby player has spoken out in defence of his Strictly co-stars after some received hateful comments from viewers.

In a recent interview, Ugo explained Tilly Ramsay, Judi Love and his professional partner Oti Mabuse have all been targeted by online trolls.

The sport star said: “All of us on Strictly sign up to be critiqued by the judges when we perform, but what no-one signs up to [is] abuse.”

“It’s vile, and criminal actually,” he continued. “We saw it with Tilly, and unfortunately Oti had it on Instagram, and Judi too, whether it be racist abuse or fat shaming.”

Loose Women panelist Judi missed Strictly’s Saturday show this weekend after she tested positive for Covid-19.

However, Ugo revealed even while Judi’s been away from the show she’s received abuse from Strictly viewers.

He said: “I’ve checked in with Judi since she got COVID and the girl is getting nasty messages while she’s trying to recover, saying that she’s opting out this weekend off the back of her being in the dance-off for two weeks.

“It makes me sad because the line is not blurred between criticism and abuse.

“There needs to be greater accountability for these people who want to live in the shadows,” Ugo insisted.

He went on to suggest social media companies should take action to prevent abusive messages online.

“There has to be responsibility on social media companies to protect our humans, because on one part we speak about mental health so well, but then sometimes we seem to ignore it.

“Everyone says they’re tired of it, they’ve had enough, but the conversation has got to lead to action and at the moment we don’t see it,” Ugo told Radio Times.

However, sadly it’s not just online trolls who have been targeting the contestants on Strictly Come Dancing.

Fans hit out at radio presenter Steve Allen after he described Strictly’s Tilly as a “chubby little thing” live on air.

Chatting about the 19-year-old on his radio show, Steve remarked: “She can’t blimming well dance, I’m bored with her already.

“She’s a chubby little thing, isn’t she? Have you noticed? Probably her dad’s cooking, I should imagine,” he added.

After hearing the comments about her appearance, Tilly took to Instagram to hit out at Steve.

In a statement posted on her social media, she said: “Steve please feel free to voice your opinions, however I draw the line at commenting on my appearance.”

“I won’t tolerate people that think it’s okay to publicly comment and scrutinise anyone’s weight and appearance,” she added.

Sadly, Ugo was knocked out of the competition on Sunday night, but there are still 10 dance duos remaining on Strictly.

Strictly Come Dancing continues Saturday at 7pm on BBC One.

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