Louis Walsh has defended concert promoter Peter Aiken and lashed out at Ireland as a 'banana republic' in the wake of Garthgate.
Speaking to Colm Hayes on RTÉ 2Fm today (July 8), the boy band manager and X Factor judge said he is "100%” on the side of concert promoters following the cancellation of the three permitted Garth Brooks concerts at Croke Park.
"I know Peter Aiken and he's one of the best promoters in the business, and respected worldwide," Walsh said.
"He’s best friends with Garth Brooks, and his manager. I’ve never seen him so excited as when he booked these gigs. This was very personal to him and his own family."
Walsh added that he saw the situation as damaging to Ireland’s reputation in a variety of ways.
“It was great for the country, for hotels and restaurants and taxis, and now everyone is going to suffer because of someone, somewhere and red tape,” he said.
“It's sending out a really bad message. We're supposed to be a friendly nation.”
He added: “This will go around the world now that we couldn't run five concerts. Maybe Bob Geldof was right - banana republic.”