In Depth

French mayor apologises after Ikea April Fool’s falls flat

Caroline Cayeux announced 4,000 jobs were coming to Beauvais before revealing it to be ill-judged joke

Ikea

A French mayor has apologised following an ill-judged April Fool’s Day joke.

Caroline Cayeux, mayor of Beauvais in northern France, announced on Twitter that Swedish furniture company Ikea would be opening a store in the small town later this year.

Cayeux wrote that Beauvais “beat off competition from other French cities,” for which she “congratulates herself.”

The “joke was initially too deadpan for some, with several excited residents offering gratitude and writing ‘very good news’”, reports RT.

But as Cayeux was forced to explain that this was in fact a joke, the merriment turned to anger.

Locals “were not amused when the mayor, hours later, clarified that the news about job opportunities was not true”, says the BBC.

“What a joke! I leave my hometown in a week, because impossible to find a job here,” wrote Twitter user XavierL.

According to RT another local, Julien, wrote on Twitter: “Yeah, it's funny to make us think there are jobs when there aren't any.”

While a third, ArMelo, said: “We will all vote for you in the next election...joke.”

Cayeux later apologised, admitting her choice of topic had been “unwise”, explaining that her communications team sends out a fake April Fool's Day announcement every year.

She told French newspaper Le Parisien: “This was a mistake and we will do better next year. On Sunday, I spent the day responding to internet users and did not remove the original tweet or any jokes criticising.”

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