Thursday 22 February 2018

Protesters call Michael D Higgins 'midget parasite'

Emma Jane Hade

Emma Jane Hade

PRESIDENT Michael D Higgins was subjected to a stream of abuse on a visit to a school.

The 73-year-old was taunted by protesters who called him a "sell-out", "traitor" and a "little midget parasite" as he departed Colaiste Eoin in Finglas on Friday.

Michael D Higgins
Michael D Higgins

The foul language and angry scenes were recorded on video during the protest.

The footage was later posted on YouTube by the "Dublin Says No" group.

Mr Higgins visited the school to mark its 50th anniversary at 11.30am last Friday.

While the presidential car exited the school grounds, the crowd called Mr Higgins names and whistled.

Gardai

He was branded a "sell-out", a "traitor" and "a little midget parasite".

Mr Higgins is a former Labour Senator and TD. He was President of the Labour Party from 2003 until 2011.

A hefty garda presence kept protesters away from the presidential car as Mr Higgins was chauffered away from the scene.

Mr Higgins is currently out of the country on a visit to Strasbourg.

Aras an Uachtarain did not comment yesterday after the footage emerged online.

Anti Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy defended people's right to protest - but he said that he did not agree with hurling personal abuse.

"I defend the right of the people to protest, including to protest against the President," he said. "I don't defend personal abuse, calling him a midget," he said.

Irish Independent

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