Sammy Wilson’s breastfeeding remarks ‘caused hurt and anger’, says Sinn Fein MLA

Sammy Wilson MP

Sammy Wilson MP

Sinn Féin MLA Oliver McMullan has called on East Antrim MP Sammy Wilson to withdraw controversial remarks he made about breastfeeding.

In an interview on BBC Radio Ulster, Mr Wilson claimed women who want to breastfeed in the House of Commons were “exhibitionists” and described it as “voyeuristic”.

The comments were made during a discussion about an independent review that said MPs should be allowed to breastfeed in the parliamentary chamber.

Speaking to Stephen Nolan on the BBC, Mr Wilson said: “It’s voyeuristic if you have the opportunity to do it somewhere that is much more private away from the glare of the public, the cameras etc.

“For me anyone who chooses to do it in the chamber rather than the quietness of their office, is doing it for reasons other than simply feeding the child.”

But Mr McMullan has branded the remarks “disgraceful” and claimed they have “caused a lot of hurt and anger in the local area”.

“Breastfeeding is a perfectly natural and healthy thing to do and there is absolutely no justification for the language used by Sammy Wilson,” the Sinn Fein man said.

“His comments were insulting and he should withdraw them immediately.”

The DUP has distanced itself from Mr Wilson’s comments, with South Antrim MLA Pam Cameron tweeting that she did not agree with the comments made by her party colleague.