Responding to a question from MP for Leicester East Keith Vaz, Blair said he hadn’t watched the programme, but added: “I would agree entirely that we should oppose racism in all its forms.”
15,000 complaints have now been made to regulator Ofcom. The debate has attracted much media attention, causing the show's previously flagging ratings to rise over the past few evenings, to 4.5 million and a 18.6% share last night.
The 60-minute Channel 4 programme began with 4.2 million and a 17.5% share at 9pm, rising to 4.7 million and 19.7% in the final 15-minutes.
Over the weekend, viewers had dropped to 2.8 million on Saturday night, the lowest viewing figures so far, but have climbed since the alleged racist comments were broadcast, to 2.9 million and a 11.3% share on Sunday night, and 3.5 million and a 13.9% share on Monday.
The show is currently averaging 4.1 million and a 16% compared to the same number of days for the previous series, when it was attracting 4.6 million and a 18.2% share.
Meanwhile sponsor Carphone Warehouse has confirmed it is not intending to pull its sponsorship of the show. In a statement it said: “We are against racism in any shape or form. As sponsor we have no involvement in the content of the programme, but Channel 4 takes these allegations very seriously and we have full faith that they will deal with them in the appropriate way. We have no intention of pulling out of our sponsorship of Celebrity Big Brother. ”