Wednesday 28 September 2016

'I'm fed up of the whole bloody lot of ye' - Labour's Ann Phelan storms out of radio debate with election rivals

David Kearns

Published 23/02/2016 | 08:43

Ann Phelan of the Labour party is the Minister of State with special responsibility for rural economic development
Ann Phelan of the Labour party is the Minister of State with special responsibility for rural economic development

A Labour Minister of State stormed out of a live radio debate with her constituency rivals, claiming she was “fed up of the whole bloody lot of ye”.

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Carlow-Kilkenny TD Ann Phelan, who is responsibility for rural economic development, was taking part in a heated round-table discussion with the other 14 election candidates in her constituency when tempers flared.

Describing the debate as an "absolute disgrace", Deputy Phelan was attempting to counter a listener comment about the lack of bus services in the area when she was repeatedly interrupted by a number of other candidates.

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With KCLR’s Matt O’Keeffe calling for just one voice, Ms Phelan declared she was “just going to give up” and rounded on the rest of the election candidates.

“I came to this debate here tonight, I came in here, I’ve been completely ignored and I’ll tell you right now I’m fed up of the whole bloody lot of ye,” she said before being heard removing microphone and leaving the studio.

The Minister had been responding to the statement that there was no “new employment, no Bus Eireann, no incentive to work” in the Carlow-Kilkenny constituency.

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Ms Phelan offered this before the interjections began: “Well I’ll tell you what happened with the Bus Eireann incentive, which happened a number of years ago where we did a survey in the town to actually collect the number of people who would use the service.

“We held a public meeting and unfortunately very few people turned up to that meeting so if you have a lot of people turning up to a meeting and you go to Bus Eireann and say…”

She continued “It’s demand-lead, it’s demand lead” before moderator  Matt O’Keeffe attempted to silence those interjecting.

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