‘Deeply hurtful’: Grand Orange Lodge to investigate video mocking Michaela McAreavey’s murder – 43m ago
3rd June 2022
THE GRAND ORANGE Lodge of Ireland has launched an investigation after a video emerged which appears to show people in an Orange Hall in Northern Ireland mocking the murder of Michaela McAreavey.
McAreavey, the daughter of GAA manager Mickey Harte, was strangled in her room at the Legends Hotel in Mauritius while on honeymoon on 10 January, 2011.
The teacher, who had married husband John McAreavey ten days earlier, was attacked after she returned to her room alone and disturbed a burglary.
No-one has been convicted of murdering her.
The song in the video, which appears to be sung in an Orange Hall, contains the words “went to Mauritius on her honeymoon”.
It also contains the line, “went to the room to get a wee treat”, and references John McAreavey.
There has been swift and widespread criticism across the political, civic and business worlds to the content of the video.
A spokesman for the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland criticised the video and confirmed that an investigation would now take place.
“The video currently circulating on social media relating to the murder of Michaela McAreavey is utterly abhorrent and the Orange Institution condemns the content without reservation,” a statement read.
“The behaviour of those involved and their actions have no place in our society and certainly do not reflect the ethos of our organisation.
“The Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland has instigated an inquiry into the incident and if any of those involved are found to be members of the Institution, they will face disciplinary proceedings.”
Political representatives from across the political spectrum also expressed anger over the video.
Maolíosa Mc Hugh, a Sinn Féin MLA for West Tyrone, said he was “absolutely disgusted” and added that he would be “bringing this to the attention of the PSNI”.
The SDLP’s Patsy McGlone, an MLA for Mid-Ulster, said the video is “about as base in humanity as you can go”, while his party colleague, councillor Malachy Quinn, labelled it “reprehensible” and said all “those involved should be bloody ashamed”.
Kate Nicholl, an Alliance MLA for South Belfast, said she was shocked by the “hatred displayed in the video of men singing and laughing about the horrific murder of a young woman”.
She has also reported the incident to the PSNI and called on Mervyn Gibson, the Grand Secretary of the Orange Order, to take action.
Sinn Féin MP for Fermanagh/South Tyrone, Michelle Gildernew, tweeted: “A beautiful young woman was murdered on honeymoon and this is how loyalists “celebrate” the Queen’s jubilee.”
Unionist politicians have also condemned the video.
DUP leader Jeffrey Donaldson has called the video “vile” and said it is “plain wrong and is deeply hurtful to the family of Michaela McAreavey”.
Ulster Unionist Party leader Doug Beattie also labelled it “abhorrent, disgusting and shameful”, while his party colleague Robbie Butler MLA said he could “only imagine what this does to her poor family”.
TUV leader Jim Allister added: “The video glorying in the murder of Michaela McAreavey is beyond disgusting, bringing shame and dishonour on all associated with such loathsome behaviour.”
Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney noted that wide condemnation of the “shameful video”.
“Important to see condemnation across the board of this hateful and shameful behaviour. Our thoughts and solidarity are with John and Michaela’s family,” he tweeted.
A PSNI spokesperson also said that police are aware of the video posted and are examining the content to determine if any offences may have been committed.