“Donkey” slur in barnyard Facebook spat may end in court

A real ‘humdinger’ à moda portuguesa over Facebook – involving a chicken, a mare, a sheep and a goat – may end up in court, due to reference to a donkey.

The issue centres on the fact that the so-called donkey was not one with four legs.

Sixty-year-old Luís Brito was actually referring to his local parish president Sandra Margarida.

As tabloid Correio da Manhã explains, the barnyard barney goes back to August last year when Ms Margarida’s “União de Freguesias” of Albernóa and Trindade (Beja) announced over Facebook that it had presented “a formal complaint to the competent authorities” following the sighting of a “horse and a chicken on the green spaces of Albernóa”.

Luís Brito shared the post, admitting – says CM – to being the owner of the chicken.

“It is sad that my chickens, a mare belonging to gyspies, Manuel’s sheep and Xico’s goat have to maintain the village greenspaces because our donkey of a parish council president doesn’t”, he commented. “She is too busy dealing with the red spaces”.

CM explains this last sentence refers to Ms Margarida’s communist affiliations – adding that Beja’s public ministry considers Luis Brito’s words “offend (her) honour and personal and professional standing” within the rural community.

Brito, for his part, appears nonplussed.

“It was just a throwaway remark that I made without any form of malice”, he told the paper. “I know a criminal complaint exists, but I do not understand where the crime is”.

Brito stresses that he did not call Ms Margarida a donkey “directly”.

Ms Margarida meantime has played the ‘serenity’ card. Like many people involved in judicial proceedings in Portugal, she says she is “awaiting the outcome of the process with serenity”.

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