Statement from Catherine Byrne, Fine Gael TD for Dublin South Central on this is mornings activities of Eirigi DCC Louise Minihan.
Gang of thugs, not protestors, prevent children from meeting Tánaiste and Minister for Children – Byrne
Eirigí Councillor Louise Minihan should be expelled from DCC
Fine Gael TD for Dublin South Central, Catherine Byrne, has today (Friday) described her disgust and fury at what she described as the gang of thugs who prevented the Tanaiste and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, from meeting with school children in Ballyfermot.
“We live in a democracy and I have no problem with peaceful protests, but what I saw this morning in Ballyfermot disgusted me. School children from Ballyfermot and surrounding areas arrived at the Base in Ballyfermot to meet the Tánaiste and Minister for Children to show them the hard work they had put into their campaign for a Yes vote in the Children’s Referendum. This event was organised by UNICEF to launch its campaign for a Yes vote .They were met by a gang of thugs, led by Eirígí Councilor Louise Minihan, in what can only be described as ugly and intimidating scenes outside the venue.
“When the Tánaiste’s car arrived with the Minister for Children, their car was spat on, egged, kicked, and rocked. The children were being held inside the venue for their safety and the Tánaiste’s car had to retreat and leave the venue. This protest was totally unfounded and I am calling for Cllr. Minihan, who was front and centre in this protest, to be expelled from Dublin City Council.
“This is not about the decent people of Ballyfermot. This is about a small section of society hell bent on causing trouble. Something has to be done about these thugs. That young people had to witness this nastiness is an absolute disgrace and the people involved must be brought to task. They contribute nothing to the local community and never get involved in securing facilities for Ballyfermot.
“The people who lost out here were the children who put so much time and effort into producing a wonderful presentation for their guests which went unseen. This included an animated video produced by the children which is so good that I am urging UNICEF and the children to release this video nationwide.
“I will be writing to the City Manager today to highlight my disgust that an elected representative, Cllr. Louise Minihan, was involved in today’s ugliness and request her dismissal from the Council. Cllr. Minihan was appointed by the City Council as a member of the Board of the Base, and I believe she has abused her position by being involved in this ugly protest today.”