Wednesday 21 August 2019

Harte apology after players sang rebel song

Apologised: Mickey Harte. Photo: Sportsfile
Apologised: Mickey Harte. Photo: Sportsfile

Dean Grey

Tyrone GAA manager Mickey Harte has apologised after some of his players were filmed singing a rebel song as a band parade passed their bus.

The incident happened in Aughnacloy as the team were returning from a game in Clones, Co Monaghan, on Saturday. In the video, players can be heard singing along to 'Come Out Ye Black And Tans' as members of Lisgenny Flute Band went by.

The parade in Aughnacloy is an annual event and takes place after 8.30pm to avoid disruption to parishioners attending Mass. DUP leader Arlene Foster said she hopes Tyrone GAA "deal with this in a sensible way and we all move on".

"The bands were unaware of the singing or the comments until this video appeared," she said. "It was their annual parade. There are many children in the bands. The parade is about the music and performance in front of their neighbours. It is not about offending anyone.

"The singing and the particular offensive remark does not represent many people who support GAA. I hope Tyrone GAA deal with this in a sensible way and we all move on.

"The Aughnacloy parade is an example of sharing where they don't start the parade until the Saturday evening Mass is over."

In a statement to the BBC, Harte said the behaviour of some of his players was "unacceptable". He apologised to "anyone who has been offended by the unacceptable behaviour of some of the panel on Saturday evening".

"The matter is being dealt with in-house and we won't be making any further comment," he added.

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