Less than a year after being elected as a Sinn Féin councillor representing Tallaght South, Paddy Holohan has been suspended from the party with immediate effect, following offensive comments made on his podcast.
The former UFC fighter shocked listeners during an episode of his “No Shame” podcast, where he stated that there were “some f***ing scum women out there” before claiming there were “loads of” underage girls pursing men and blackmailing them for for up to €10,000.
“…there’s a situation that I heard during the week... somebody was underage, the person didn’t know they were underage, the girl pursued the guy,” Holohan said on his podcast. “Got whatever she needed, had pictures, had videos, and then said ‘I want 10 grand’. And . . . that wasn’t the first person, there was loads of them. What is that kind of situation that’s going on in society now? I have two sons. It petrifies me, petrifies me that somebody could turn around and say I’m literally just going to say that you attacked me if you don’t give me 10 grand.”
Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald stated that the councillor’s latest comments were “upsetting” and “beyond offensive” before adding that the “party’s disciplinary procedure is now activated as we speak.”
Holohan’s latest comments came after he stated that he would prefer a “family man” to be Ireland’s Prime Minister, an apparent reference to Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, who is gay. He also questioned Varadkar’s Irish roots because of his Indian heritage, stating that “”Leo Varadkar’s blood obviously runs to India so his great grandfather is not part of the history of this country.”
Holohan released a statement on his social media accounts, where he apologized to those he “may have offended” before claiming his comments were “misinterpreted.”
Varadkar accepted Mr Holohan’s apology last week and added that many people from from a minority background in Ireland have likely experienced racism.
”We just need to raise awareness of the issue and make sure that we have a properly united country, whether you are a man or a woman, no matter what background you come from, whether you’re a member of the travelling community or not or who you love,” the taoiseach said.