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UFC star Conor McGregor has slammed Republic of Ireland’s new Covid rules as ’embarrassing’, called the country’s leaders ‘lap dogs’, and urged them to leave the European Union in a furious rant online.
Taoiseach Micheal Martin has announced new measures to run from December 7 to January 9.
They include the full closure of nightclubs, social distancing in restaurants, maximum capacities of 50 per cent at sporting events, Covid passes in gyms, and a maximum of three households for indoor mixing.
However, McGregor is unhappy with the rules and has sensationally leapt into a furious rant on Twitter at the country’s politicians. He has also urged them to leave the EU.
“Embarrassing ‘leadership’. Messengers. Lap dogs,” McGregor fumed on the platform.
“Get this system now and shred it fully!
“Disband nphet (National Public Health Emergency Team). Realign the hse (Health and Safety Executive) to do it’s job. Formed 2005 to assist our hospitals. Instead annihilated.
“€11.5m public funded hse money paid to media entities. This year alone. Appalling.
“To be at this level of vaccination % yet going backwards, and attempting now to talk mandating. Laughable.
“Shame on you all in current power. EU lackeys.
“The tracks of this gravy train will soon be realigned and sent to its rightful destination of an Irish red brick wall.
He continued in further tweets: “It is time to talk Ireland leaving the European Union.
“We do not have leaders in Ireland, we have messengers. Subordinates.”
Taoiseach Martin has defended the new rules, saying: “Restrictions on travel can be useful in delaying the entry of new variants but they cannot stop them…the risks with going into Christmas period without some resrictions…is just too high.”
Mr Martin has acknowledged that many workers in the hospitality sector will be “bitterly disappointed”.
Mr Martin added: “I want to reassure them that just as we have done since the beginning of the pandemic, the government will stand by them and ensure that they have the financial supports necessary to weather this latest storm and to stay intact until we are out of it,” he said.
The taoiseach described the emergence of the Omicron variant in South Africa as a “cause for concern” and disappointing “twist” in the pandemic.
“Just a few weeks ago South Africa was reporting approximately 300 cases per day. Yesterday it reported 11,500 new cases,” he said.
Mr Martin said experience had shown that while restrictions on travel were “useful to delay the entry of new variants, it is impossible to stop them”.
So far the Republic of Ireland has only one confirmed Omicron case but Mr Martin said there was “potential for a very serious crisis” if the variant proved to be more transmissible.
“Further study and examination in the weeks ahead may discover that Omicron does not represent a more deadly threat,” he said.
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