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'Beyond offensive' - Sinn Féin suspends Paddy Holohan from party after controversial comments

  • Councillor only elected in May last year
  • Mary Lou McDonald describes comments as 'completely at odds' with Sinn Féin's beliefs


Paddy Holohan has been suspended by Sinn Fein (Niall Carson/PA)

Paddy Holohan has been suspended by Sinn Fein (Niall Carson/PA)

Paddy Holohan has been suspended by Sinn Fein (Niall Carson/PA)

SINN Féin has suspended Paddy Holohan from the party after controversial comments on one of his podcasts where he said there were "some f**king scum women out there".

South Dublin County Councillor Paddy Holohan, a former UFC fighter whose nickname is 'Hooligan', was forced to issue an apology yesterday after he called the Taoiseach "of Indian blood" on his podcast, and for saying he would prefer for the leader of the country to be a "family man".

He said his comments were “misinterpreted” in a statement on Twitter.

"He's so separated not even from society now, but he's so separated from the history of this country," he said.

"Leo Varadkar's blood obviously runs to India, you know, so his great-grandfather is not part of the history of this country, you know what I mean."

On a separate podcast published two days ago, Mr Holohan said he wanted a "family man" to run the country.


Mary Lou McDonald. Picture: Collins

Mary Lou McDonald. Picture: Collins

Mary Lou McDonald. Picture: Collins

"We need people running the country and, not against Leo or anything like that, but to me I want a family man running the country."

Speaking yesterday, Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald told reporters that she was “satisfied” with his apology and will not be removing him from the party.

However more quotes have emerged today where he allegedly made controversial comments about women.

The Councillor was talking about how if he ran an all-women MMA class, it would be supported, but an all-male class would be criticised.

“I don’t understand the idea of me separating a situation so all females can be there and every man is excluded, the same way I don’t feel that’s it’s okay to put all men in a situation and exclude all females,” he said.

Cllr Holohan said that he would be criticised for “hating women” if he ran an all-male class.

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“If I put that out there my business would be affected and I would be affected, I would be slated, ‘he hates women’, or they wouldn’t say, ‘he hates men’.”

Terry McMahon, who is being interviewed on the podcast, says that he understands some women wanting female only MMA classes if they have been attacked in the past, because there are “scum men”.

Cllr Holohan adds, “there is sme f****ing scum women out there as well. I just wanna say to you, a situation I heard during the week where somebody heard somebody was underage, the person didn’t know they were underage, the girl had pursued the guy, got whatever she needed, had pictures, had videos, and then said, ‘I want ten grand.”

“And that wasn’t the first person, there were loads of them. What kind of situation is that that is going on in society now? I have two sons, it petrifies me that somebody can turn around and say, ‘I’m literally going to say you attacked me if you don’t give me ten grand’.”

“And people go, that doesn’t happen.”

“It is happening out there.”

Sinn Féin issued a statement this afternoon to say that they've suspended the Tallaght councillor.

“Paddy Holohan has been suspended from Sinn Féin with immediate effect, and a disciplinary process has been initiated,” the party stated.

Speaking in Bray, Co Wicklow, Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald said disciplinary action would be taken against Councillor Paddy Holohan.

“Obviously the comments are offensive, they are beyond offensive, I actually find them upsetting. I am very, very shocked at the comments made, and the party’s disciplinary procedure is now activated as we speak.”

She said she regarded it as a “gross breach” of Sinn Féin’s code of ethics and said she was “as shocked as anybody” to see the comments having only learned of them 40 minutes before she spoke to journalists.

A short time later, while canvassing Main Street in Bray, Ms McDonald was informed that Mr Holohan had been suspended by the party.

She said his comments were “completely at odds” with Sinn Féin’s beliefs. “They’re just, I don’t have a term strong enough to express my deep, deep anger and upset at those remarks,” Ms McDonald said.

She added that she had not spoken with Mr Holohan.

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