Councillor’s ‘Rebel passport’ idea attracts interest, boy

IT’S been a self-declared republic for years, like.

But now, a Rebel city councillor wants its citizens to have official proof in the form of a Cork “passport”.

Fine Gael Cllr Laura McGonigle has tabled a motion for discussion at next Monday night’s council meeting calling for the introduction of a “Certificate of Corkness”.

The motion reads: “That Cork City Council would introduce a Certificate of Corkness or a ‘Cork Passport’, issued similarly to the Certificate of Irish Heritage scheme introduced by central Government earlier this year.

“The Certificate of Corkness document will be available to people outside Cork who want their Cork roots to be officially recognised.”

But far from having to wash a feed of tripe and drisheen down with a pint of Beamish, Murphy’s or Tanora, while singing De Banks in a Cork GAA jersey, applicants will simply have to prove their Cork ancestry.

“Anybody applying for the certificate will have to provide proof of their Cork ancestry and connection with our great county,” she said. “We are a people apart and a place apart and I believe that this feeling is shared by Cork people whether they live in Dublin or Washington DC.”

Her idea was inspired by the Government’s decision earlier this year to launch a Certificate of Irish Heritage scheme for the global Irish diaspora, which is estimated at some 700 million.

People claiming this certificate have to prove their Irish ancestry, before forking over €40 for the certificate, or €60 for a framed certificate.

Ms McGonigle said in challenging economic times, the city council could use the Cork passport to generate much-needed revenue.

It could be ring-fenced for charitable or other projects, she suggested.

“The Cork heritage cert is just another manifestation of genuine Cork pride,” she said.

The proposal was trending on Twitter in Ireland last night.

Ancestors Ireland, a professional genealogy service, described it as an “excellent, novel way to market Cork to the Irish diaspora”.

However, others have poured scorn on the idea suggesting it was further proof that Corkonians think they’re better the rest of the country.

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