JERUSALEM, Feb. 17 (JTA) — A Labor Party rally in Israel took an unexpected turn when the party’s sole Ethiopian legislator grabbed the microphone and accused the party of racism. Adisu Massala claimed at Tuesday night’s rally that ballot tampering from the party’s primary a day before had cost him the place on Labor’s roster of Knesset candidates that had been reserved for an immigrant representative. Massala accused Labor officials of selling him out and giving the slot to a representative of the Russian immigrant community, a larger voting bloc than the Ethiopian community. Initial reports regarding the outcome of the Labor primary said Massala had won the seat reserved for immigrants, the 19th slot on the Labor roster. Subsequent reports indicated that Russian-born legislator Sofia Landver had won the slot and that Massala’s place on the roster would not guarantee him a place in the incoming Knesset. Massala described himself at the rally as a “political sacrifice” as Labor officials seek the support of the Russian-immigrant community in the May elections. The incident was a severe blow to Labor leader Ehud Barak, who has tried to portray the party as a home for all Israelis. Barak later denied any wrongdoing and ordered a recount of the primary ballots. The Labor official who oversaw the subsequent recount, Dudu Pidut, said the results “prove without a doubt” that there had not been any vote tampering. Massala did not send a representative to the computer firm that recounted the votes, saying he had no faith in the process.