Abbeyleix Parish Priest Fr Paddy Byrne has launched a blistering attack against plans to stage an event commemorating the RIC.
Taking to Facebook this afternoon, Fr Paddy has accused members of the RIC of being agents of the British State that evicted Irish people off their landed during The Famine.
Fr Paddy said: “The RIC were agents of the British state that worked for British landlords to evict Irish people off the land during the planned genocide that some call “the famine”.
“The Idea of celebrating and commemorating the Black and Tans is demonstrative of how out of touch this Government is with the grass roots of Irish Citizens.”
And it seems that Fr Paddy’s comments have struck a cord as it has attracted hundreds of likes, comments and shares in the short time that it has been online.
Fr Paddy is one of a number of public figures who have hit out at the plans.
Fianna Fail’s Sean Fleming confirmed to LaoisToday earlier today that he would not be attending the event pencilled in for January 19.
He insists that “Fine Gael have gone off on a solo run on this one” and that the disagreement and the manner in which the issue is being handled by the Government is fueling the mounting tensions between the two main parties.
Meanwhile, Minister for Justice and Laois TD Charlie Flanagan, last night released a statement where he stated that the commemoration was not ‘a celebration of the Black and Tans’.
Flanagan justifies the decision to hold this commemoration by saying we should remember all those who died over that period in time including the DMP and RIC who he claims have found themselves “on the wrong side of history”.
SEE ALSO – 20 Laois people to watch out for in 2020