Tuesday 6 December 2016

WATCH: Kenny and Varadkar left bemused as Micheál Martin tries to imitate Michael Noonan

Published 28/09/2016 | 17:48

Finance Minister Michael Noonan is well used to being impersonated by comedians – but it was Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin who had his colleagues in stitches today.

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Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar were left looking bemused and amused as Mr Martin attempted a Limerick accent in the Dáil chamber.

The Opposition leader was questioning the Taoiseach about the review of cardiac services at Waterford hospital and the promises junior minister John Halligan got in relation to the potential provision of a second cath lab.

Mr Halligan has claimed that during government negotiations he was told a review of services was a formality and would ultimately led to funding for a second lab.

However, an independent review has recommended against this and sparked a furious row between Mr Halligan and Fine Gael minsters Simon Harris, Simon Coveney and Michael Noonan.

In the Dáil, Mr Martin asked the Taoiseach whether a verbal agreement had been made outside of what was recorded in the Programme for Government.

“I can almost hear him [Michael Noonan] gently saying to John Halligan, you know, ‘sure don’t worry about it John, t’is an old formality, it’ll be looked after’,” Mr Martin said in a bizarre attempt at mimicking the Finance Minister.

In response Mr Varadkar smirked broadly while Mr Kenny couldn’t help but laugh.

It’s not the first time Mr Martin has tried in hand at impressions. In 2011 he was forced to apologise after a crude attempt at a Chinese accent while discussion a Fianna Fáil jobs plan.

"I made a comment in a manner I shouldn’t have," he said at the time.

"I was making a serious point about how Ireland is seen in the world as a leader in software. If anyone was in any way offended I of course apologise."

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