Should there be a statue of Michael Collins?
The centenary of the Big Fellow’s assassination at Béal na mBlath is fast approaching and, while the An Post has issued a stamp to commemorate his life, some have asked whether more could be done to honour his contribution to the state.
Patrick O’Donovan, who serves as Minister with responsibility for the Office of Public Works, says that the state should find a grander way to pay tribute to him:
“I know of nowhere in the democratic world, certainly where a leader of a democratic nation is assassinated, and there is no national commemoration to him,” Minister O’Donovan complained.
“It happens in all democratic countries across the world. And in my view, as Minister for the OPW, it should happen here.”
Perhaps unsurprisingly for a Corkman, Newstalk Breakfast presenter Jonathan Healy is very much in favour:
“The sight of the ambush at Béal na mBláth needs something,” he said.
“It needs extra value added to it and I know the community down there is working on a project but when you look at the Kilmichael Ambush site - which is only a few kilometers away - there’s a massive commemoration there for what was an IRA attack on the British during the War for Independence.
“But where Collins actually died, there really isn’t that much and I think history, as de Valera admitted himself, has been a little unkind to Collins until relatively recently.”
Main image: Michael Collins