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Now the 'curry my yoghurt' MP has been barred from speaking in Stormont...

… but only for today, and he wasn’t there.

Source: Broadsheet.ie via BBC/YouTube

A POLITICIAN IN Northern Ireland who came under fire yesterday for mocking the Irish language has been barred from speaking in the Northern Ireland Assembly after failing to apologise for the remarks.

However, the ban only applied for today, and he wasn’t there.

Yesterday Democratic Unionist Party MP and MLA Gregory Campbell replied with “curry my yoghurt, can cola coalyer” when asked to speak in the chamber.

This was poking fun at the Irish phrase “go raibh maith agat, Ceann Comhairle”, meaning “thank you, speaker”.

Speaking to the BBC Radio’s The Nolan Show, Campbell said he didn’t believe he had anything to apologise for.

Interview with Campbell starts at roughly 1.30 into the above clip. If you have trouble loading the podcast, click here.

He said that the remark was prompted by Sinn Féin MLAs ‘almost always’ beginning their contributes with the Irish phrase.

“Why? Why do they feel on every occasion, on every topic, no matter whose answer, no matter what the topic is, they have to start in Irish? Why?” Campbell told the programme.

I am very fond of Ulster Scots music. If I started every sentence, statement, or question with a few words of ‘Will ye go lassie go?’, how long would it be before people would say ‘Catch yourself on, Greggy, what are you doing?’.

Speaker Mitchel McLaughlin said yesterday’s remarks “fell well below the standards expected”, adding that “the spirit of mockery was blatant”.

“I am not prepared to allow such a breach of standards to pass without consequence,” McLaughlin added, “Be in no doubt, if humour was in the Member’s intention, it failed miserably.”

Mitchel announced that Campbell has been banned from speaking for the day.

However, he was due in the House of Commons today, and so the ban had no impact.

‘Curry my yoghurt’: This DUP politician poked fun at the Irish language today >

About the author:

Nicky Ryan

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