‘MP for menswear’: Labour’s candidate battling Farage for Clacton seat becomes unlikely fashion hit

Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Clacton has become an unexpected style icon. Jovan Owusu-Nepaul – who is going up against Nigel Farage, the Reform UK leader, for the Essex seat – has been dubbed “the best dressed candidate in living memory” by fans on social media.

In images shared on the Clacton Labour Instagram, which have subsequently gone viral with thousands of likes on X/Twitter, Owusu-Nepaul was seen meeting members of the constituency in ensembles featuring vibrant knitwear, green trousers, a classic trench coat and paisley ties.

“Love Jovan’s style. MPs are normally so boring,” one person praised on X/Twitter. “He had me at the paisley tie. Moving to Clacton, voting red. Done,” another user announced, while a third person added the Clacton Labour social media posts looked like a “catalogue shoot”.

“Finally someone in the commons that would actually serve,” said another Owusu-Nepaul fan.

In contrast, Farage – who was recently doused in banana milkshake by an OnlyFans model while carrying out media interviews in Clacton – has predominantly retired his once loud outfits of mustard corduroy trousers and battered Barbour jackets for a simple blue double breasted suit while on his eighth campaign to become an MP.

A recent poll by Electoral Calculus suggests Farage is likely to win the Clacton constituency relatively comfortably, securing 39 per cent of the vote. Labour is projected to come second with 28 per cent and the party have told locals to cast their ballots tactically, claiming Owusu-Nepaul is the only one who can keep Farage from emerging victorious.

Notably, some users on X/Twitter have pointed out some of Owusu-Nepaul’s outfits appear to riff on the Reform UK politician’s former fashion choices. “He dresses like Farage,” one person claimed in reaction to images of Owusu-Nepaul in a blazer and green trousers, which are markedly brighter than Farage’s dared to be while campaigning for UKIP in the area in 2014.

Owusu-Nepaul in Clacton 2024/Farage in Clacton in 2014 (Instagram @clactonlabour / Getty)
Owusu-Nepaul in Clacton 2024/Farage in Clacton in 2014 (Instagram @clactonlabour / Getty)

Owusu-Nepaul – who is an active trade unionist and campaigner – has been described by the Labour party as a “young man with a passion for revitalising the constituency and a desire for change”.

The well dressed Labour hopeful said it had been “the honour of my life” to be selected as the party’s candidate, adding: “I know we can mount a campaign to give us a fighting chance of winning the next election and give residents in places like Clacton, Frinton, Walton-on-the-Naze and the surrounding villages a stronger voice in Westminster.”