TOWIE’s James Lock apologises after backlash over travelling to Dubai for ‘work’02/16/2021
James Lock has apologised for any insensitivity he may have caused, following a backlash to his recent trip to Dubai.
The TOWIE star, 34, has been working in the UAE capital city over recent weeks, collaborating with shopping network OOOOO.
When Secretary of State Priti Patel spoke out against influencers travelling abroad during the pandemic, James caused an uproar when he accused her of "inciting hate".
The reality star has since apologised for his remarks, adding he isn’t "a bad person" and defending his decision to travel to the UAE.
Speaking to The Sun, he said: "I hold my hands up, I have been insensitive at times. I should have been more considerate to the people back home who are struggling."
James added his own family and loved ones have been finding the lockdown trying and wondered whether it would be better if he "went bankrupt".
He added: "But I honestly haven't meant to upset anyone and I'm not a bad person. I've tried to be as respectful as I can.
"Some influencers were out here partying but I've not been here on holiday I've been out here working hard and that's why I stayed."
James also claimed he wanted to earn enough money as possible to help his parents in their retirement, reflecting on his childhood growing up in London's Tower Hamlets.
In late January, Ms Patel warned influencers that "going on holiday is not an exemption," following the alarming migration of British social media stars to the UAE.
James and his ex-girlfriend, Yazmin Oukhellou, had been living and working in the sunny capital until their recent breakup.
The former flames lived out their on-off relationship on TOWIE, previously launching a wellness retreat together in Morocco, which still appears to be in business.
Discussing their split with OK! Magazine last week, James said: "We've broken up.
"We tried to make it work and we really thought it was going to be different this time but things don't always work out as you'd expect.
"I have a lot of love for Yaz and a huge amount of respect for her but we're just better apart."
Yazmin also spoke out on their split, explaining their relationship wasn't working and they decided it was time to call it a day.
She told the publication: "James and I have split up amicably. I love James but we're not good together.
"It couldn't go on the way it was so I told James we should end things and he agreed."
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