Dáil Éireann proceedings descended into chaos this afternoon on the topic of the Roscommon eviction case.
Donegal Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty was questioning the Taoiseach over bank enforcers carrying out evictions. Doherty called the bailiffs who removed three adult siblings from their home in Strokestown as ‘thugs’ and commended the public for ‘standing up in solidarity’ with the family.
“Taoiseach, will you ensure that this is the last time that unauthorised, unregulated, bank henchmen will be entering property and behaving in the type of despicable way that we saw in Roscommon last Tuesday?,” Doherty said.
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar hit back at Doherty and asked why he has raised the issue multiple times and never condemned the subsequent organised attack on security by masked raiders at the home. Three security men required hospital treatment and a dog had to be put down following the violent events.
Addressing Doherty, Varadkar said: “Deputy, when it comes to Sinn Féin and the rule of law and public order and condemning violence, it doesn’t take long for your balaclava to slip.”
Leas-Cheann Comhairle Pat the Cope Gallagher had to call for order after shouting erupted in the chamber at the remark.
TheJournal.ie reports that Doherty later asked for the Taoiseach’s comment to be removed from Dáil records.