NORTHERN IRELAND (CelebrityAccess) – Singer/Songwriter Van Morrison started legal action against the Northern Ireland Department of Health and its minister Robin Swann (76) on Monday (May 30). The move comes after Swann wrote an op-ed piece for music magazine Rolling Stone in September 2020, which named Morrison and criticized his stance on COVID restrictions and lockdown procedures.
“We confirm that legal proceedings have been issued against Mr. Robin Swann, MLA, and the Department of Health as co-publishers of an op-ed in Rolling Stone,” confirmed Morrison’s representative to BBC News NI.
The legal action comes after Swann started defamation legal proceedings against Morrison in November 2021 after the singer called him “very dangerous” for his actions regarding coronavirus restrictions. Morrison has vocally opposed lockdowns that have led to his show postponements. He has written songs accusing scientists of making up “crooked facts” about the pandemic, including “No More Lockdown” and “Born to be Free.”
In the op-ed piece, Swann says he feels upset with Morrison, whom he did acknowledge as a “music legend.” Using the terms “bizarre and irresponsible,” Swann said: “I only hope no one takes him seriously. He’s no guru, no teacher.”