| -2.2°C Dublin

'heart breaks' Singer Hozier warns that 'something dreadful is coming' after George Nkencho's death





Singer Hozier has revealed his inner thoughts about the death of George Nkencho and admitted his fears that “something dreadful is coming”. 

The Bray man took to Twitter to voice his opinion on the incident that has been the subject of huge debate after the 27-year-old was shot dead by Gardai in Dublin.

He also addressed "the growing threat of neo-fascism and white supremacy" on national and a global level in the aftermath of the insurrection at the US Capitol on January 6.

In a lengthy statement, the 30-year-old wrote: "My heart goes out to folks in the States watching what I’m sure was a painful display of a very real and very toxic political force making its presence felt.

"It would be churlish of me to comment on white nationalist and neo-fascist activity in the US when Ireland has its own active elements organising only last week to spread lies about the late George Nkencho, a man with documented mental health difficulties who lost his life at the hands of a Gardaí response."

Hozier added that while an “investigation into the death of George Nkencho is to be welcomed”, he states that “regardless of how it turns out, this man was completely and utterly failed in his need for help".

"My heart breaks for his family and the loved ones he leaves behind," he wrote, adding: "I cannot imagine the grief and trauma they are left with and I hope the family are offered the closure and justice they are due."

Hozier also singles out far-right activists who "spread lies" about Nkencho online, which he said amounted to the actions of a "committed group of racist agitators for the purposes of provoking tensions along the lines of ethnicity and race."

The musician appeals to his "fellow members of Ireland's white settled community to take very seriously the efforts that were made online to spread lies about George Nkencho and attack his family in the aftermath of this horrible event”.

"Elaborately constructed false info was spread by a committed group of racist agitators for the purposes of provoking tensions along the lines of ethnicity and race," he continues.

"Until we as a national (and global) community take seriously the growing threat of neo-fascism and white supremacy and bring ourselves to investigate our own unobserved ethno-nationalistic sentiments this problem will only worsen with time.

“It can't be left to Ireland's black citizens and people of colour to fend off the injustice of racial hatred. It's something that is enabled by, takes roots in, and is enacted by elements within our own community, and it is that very community which has the political representation and collective power to address and disassemble it."

He signs off by writing: “We all want to live in a country we can be proud of, and we all have a role to play in that, before warning, "I fear something dreadful is coming if we can't bring ourselves to address this issue."

An investigation is underway into the events of December 30 when Mr Nkencho was followed by gardaí from the Eurospar shop at Hartstown in west Dublin. The alarm was raised by staff following an alleged confrontation in which it is said he was armed with a knife and assaulted a staff member.

Mr Nkencho walked in the direction of his home at Manorsfield Drive in Clonee, a journey of around 10 minutes, as gardaí ordered him to stop and put down the knife.

Armed gardaí arrived at the scene and tried to use non-lethal force, including pepper spray and a taser, to disable and disarm him.

This was unsuccessful, and as Mr Nkencho went to enter his home he was fired on a number of times. He was rushed to Connolly Hospital in Blanchardstown but was pronounced dead a short time later.

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

Online Editors