Donegal artist Kevin Sharkey
Donegal artist Kevin Sharkey, who has declared his interest in running for the presidency, has called for an ‘honest open dialogue’ about immigration.
The Killybegs man has also questioned Ireland’s level of foreign aid and asked whether the country could look after its older people as well as immigrants.
He was speaking on the Ray D’Arcy show on RTÉ on Saturday night where he confirmed that he was hoping to receive a nomination to run for president later this year.
The son of an immigrant, Sharkey spoke about the impact of immigration on Ireland.
“My father was an immigrant, there are a lot of positive aspects to immigration but it is going to end up coming down to one thing and that is numbers,” he said.
“We are not a big country and in 20 years time, at the rate we are going, we have places in Ireland now where there are people who are feeling they no longer have a choice, no longer have a say.
“I'm not against immigration. Look at Australia, they have a beautiful system there. If you are contributing, if you have a trade that we need and you can support yourself you are welcome. We should have an honest open dialogue about it without being shut down and called racist,” he said.