Nigel Farage’s entry into the I’m A Celeb jungle was met with a brutal dig from hosts Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly just minutes into the new series last night.

And his fellow campmate Josie Gibson was also quick to make a quip when they were joined by the politician.

As the show kicked off on Sunday night, Dec said: “There's the man who's got everyone talking. Nigel Farage. Nigel now, not just known for his controversial political career, he's also got his own show on GB News. Now of course, he won't be presenting that show over the next three weeks. So we'd like to take this opportunity to apologise to all of GB News viewers. And Ant joked: "Sorry Keith, sorry Linda."

This Morning host Josie was first to be dropped into camp as she said: “I thought this was a good idea until they dropped us off in the middle of nowhere. I’ve never been so petrified.” Farage replied: "It’s something different in life, it’s an adventure! It’s a challenge, it’s not going to be easy, but why not?” And Josie was straight in with a quip as she then added: "It can’t be worse than Brexit!”But Farage was ready for the one-liners as he then replied: "Oh… didn’t take long did it? Didn’t take long. I had a feeling we’d get a bit of that!” And “Josie replied rather awkwardly:”Only joking..."

The Mirror reports Ant and Dec faced a huge backlash over the decision to allow the controversial former politician take part in the show, with some fans even claiming they would boycott it completely. It comes after Farage’s rumoured £1.5million pay packet, with a reported 1,000 complaints bein made abut his inclusion so far.

ITV responded to the furore with a statement reading: "I’m A Celebrity has always featured a diverse cast from all areas of public life and has a history of featuring political figures throughout its 20 years on screen. As with any camp mate, viewers are invited to form their own opinions when the show begins on Sunday."

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Viewers have let their thoughts be known on social media with one social media user taking to X, formerly Twitter, to say: “Just so upset by this. Ant, Dec & ITV platforming a xenophobe who revels in whipping up division & poison. What has this country become?"

A second added: "BOYCOTT.... ITV - seeing a rating drop is the only message that will register with the powers that be... Farage has been the architect of division & decline in our country, and his web of lies to achieve Brexit can never be forgotten." While a third commented: "Boycott #ImACeleb @ITV are sanitising the deplorable @Nigel_Farage. #NigelFarage does not reflect the nation's values!"

Farage made his debut on the show last night as he stuck his head through the window of a campervan filled with snakes.

The former Ukip and Brexit Party leader was introduced by Ant and Dec and said: “I’m a hero to some people and an absolute villain to millions.

“In the jungle you’re going to find the real me. You might like me more, you might dislike me more, but you will at least find out. The best way to handle conflict is to tackle it head on. I dealt with snakes in the European Parliament, I can cope with this too.”

Fans rushed to slam him on social media.

@v1llan3v3 said: "Stop voting for Nigel Farage and giving him air time, he might be good at the trials and win over the public don’t fall for it"

@AshleyTMN added: "If he keeps smiling and takes the trials on the chin, Nigel Farage will do well in this. He's a politician and smiling through grimness is what they do."

@petermaurice22 chimed: "It's the Nigel Farage show I'm afraid. Like last year was Matt Hancock show. Every trial he will do which means he be on screen every day. Ruins to show."

Nigel is joined on the line-up of the ITV show by the likes of Jamie Lynn Spears, the sister of pop superstar Britney, Sam Thompson, TV presenter Fred Sirieix and YouTuber Nella Rose.

*I'm A Celebrity airs every day at 9pm on ITV

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