MEP speaks of disgust after man calls her scum and spits in her eye

Labour’s Phil Prendergast set upon on way to removal in Cork

Phil Prendergast: “I just felt ill afterwards.”

Phil Prendergast: “I just felt ill afterwards.”


Labour Ireland South Euro candidate and sitting MEP Phil Prendergast yesterday spoke of her upset and disgust after a member of the public approached her, called her “Labour scum” and spat in her eye

at a removal in Cork last week.

Ms Prendergast had been dropped off from her campaign car near Turners Cross on Cork’s southside to attend the removal of Thomas Lynch, father of Labour Party colleagues Ciarán Lynch TD and Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Catherine Clancy when the incident happened.

“I was just going to pay my respects last Wednesday evening and I got out of my car which is branded with ‘Phil Prendergast, Vote 1’. I was parked a good distance from the funeral home and was walking there minding my own business when I saw this man just standing there.

“He was in his late 30s or early 40s and he just said ‘Labour scum’ and spat at me – the phlegm went into my eye. For somebody to draw up phlegm from their throat and spit it at you is the worst thing and I just felt ill afterwards.

“I just walked on . . . and I thought, ‘my God, here I am going to pay my respects at somebody’s removal and somebody does this’. I couldn’t wait to get home and get into the shower and just get clean,” she said.

Ms Prendergast later reported the matter to gardaí and gave them a description of the man. She expressed hope officers may be able to identify him from CCTV in the Turners Cross area.