RALEIGH, NC (WTVD) — President Donald Trump spent Thursday night making a flurry of phone calls to friends and advisers – denying he was racist but defending his disparaging comments about Haitians and African countries – as something many people think, but won’t say.

Friday night in Raleigh, African immigrants had plenty to say about the president.

“From the president of America, wow, that’s crazy,” said Abass Diallo, owner of NC African Market on New Hope Church Road in east Raleigh.

What the president reportedly said about Africa in a White House meeting stills stings at Diallo’s store. Diallo emigrated to the U.S. from Gambia as a teen.

“We got to look at each other as human beings, not about color,” Diallo said. “But, if you’re saying somebody’s from a s—hole country, to me it doesn’t make sense. We’re not from a s—hole country. Africa is great.”

The president ignored reporters’ questions about the alleged vulgarity behind closed door with senators. He’s said to have questioned why the US would accept more immigrants from Haiti and “s—hole countries” in Africa.

On Friday morning, Trump tweeted that his “language was tough” but “this was not the language used.

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