Thursday 22 February 2018

Sinn Féin councillor says sorry for NI fan remarks

South Dublin County Council member Enda Fanning
South Dublin County Council member Enda Fanning

Alan O'Keeffe

A Sinn Féin councillor has apologised for appearing to gloat at the defeat of Northern Ireland at the Euro 2016 finals.

South Dublin County Council member Enda Fanning congratulated Wales for defeating the Northern Ireland team 1-0 in Paris.

He referred to the Northern Ireland men as "GSTQ'ers" or God Save The Queeners.

Mr Fanning, who represents the Templeogue-Terenure ward on the council, made his remarks on his Twitter account. He also said Northern Ireland supporters would "probably try kicking off again later in Belfast".

The Sinn Féin local representative was criticised for his remarks by other Twitter users until he posted an apology.

He stated: "Jeez, folks, earlier tweet was meant to be funny. Obviously misfired. Apols."

But he then appeared to further rile supporters of the Northern Ireland team when he declared he would support England if they were playing against Northern Ireland.

In reply to one of the people who took exception to his remarks regarding Northern Ireland, he went on to tweet: "I wouldn't support NI against England myself. Mightn't suit your dictatorial world but there you go. A redner. Haw haw haw."

However, Mr Fanning's remarks caused anger and upset and he was later criticised for his Twitter statements by an Ulster Unionist Assembly Member.

Doug Beattie MLA tweeted on Saturday: "What a pathetically sad tweet & sad individual.

"Good luck #Ire tomorrow & #Eng on Monday."

The Dublin councillor's statements were in stark contrast to those of senior Sinn Féin figure Martin McGuinness.

Mr McGuinness, Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland, had earlier issued his own tweets in support of the Northern Ireland team.

Mr McGuinness tweeted: "Two big games coming for Michael & Martin O'Neill, their teams & fans.

"Hoping both will make it to the #EURO2016 Quarter-Finals. Good Luck."

Irish Independent

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