Government Formation Reaction from O’Murchú

Sinn Féin will continue to lead the way to ensure that the change that Louth voters signaled in the general election in February will happen, according to Dundalk TD Ruairí Ó Murchú.

The deputy was one of 37 Sinn Féin TDs who gathered at Dublin’s Convention Centre on Saturday when Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin was elected Taoiseach.

Mr Ó Murchú said he was aware that he was ‘attending government formation in Dublin as part of a strong Sinn Féin team because of the sacrifices of others’. He paid tribute to the late Bobby Storey whose funeral takes place in Belfast tomorrow, along with Dundalk republican Sammy O’Hare who passed away earlier this year.

He said: ‘People in Louth voted for change, in a massive way, with the election of two Sinn Féin TDs. Imelda Munster topped the poll with 17,203 votes. The party secured 42% of the vote in this constituency.

‘What has happened in the last few months is that, faced with a seismic change in politics, the old guard of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael circled to wagons and excluded Sinn Féin, using the cover of the Green Party in order to do so.

‘I accept their right to form a government. I accept we didn’t have the numbers, this time, but they didn’t even talk to us ahead of government formation, which disrespects our voters and shows Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael’s willingness to hold onto power at any cost.

‘Between them, they have produced a programme for government that lacks ambition and big ideas and will not deliver on affordable housing, on building health service capacity, on Irish Unity or on the right to retire at 65.

‘But the voters of Louth will know that Imelda and I, along with the strong team we have in Leinster House, will hold this government to account like never before. We will continue to work for the people and families that voted for us.

‘We will always put forward alternatives to the right wing, corporate-orientated politics of this new government and we will deliver the change that people voted for and deserve’.

Sinn Féin Selects Two to Contest General Election for Louth & East Meath

Former TD Arthur Morgan, Gerry Adams TD, Imelda Munster TD & Cllr Ruairí Ó Murchú

 

Imelda Munster TD and Councillor Ruairí Ó Murchú have been selected by Sinn Féin members to contest next year’s general election on behalf of the Party.

The selection convention was held in the Grove Hotel in Dunleer and was attended by Sinn Féin members from across the constituency of Louth and East Meath, as well as Gerry Adams TD and former Louth TD Arthur Morgan.

Imelda Munster TD said:

“I am delighted to be given the opportunity to stand for election on behalf of Sinn Féin again. I am proud that the people of the Louth and East Meath constituency elected me to represent them in Leinster House in 2016, and I have worked tirelessly on their behalf in that time.

“If elected next year I will continue to work hard for my constituents, standing up for the people of Louth and East Meath and holding those in power to account.

“This constituency has been left behind in many ways, for example in terms of infrastructure with the government not delivering on the Northern Cross Route for Drogheda, the Julianstown Bypass and the delay of the Ardee Bypass.

“I’ve consistently raised the issue of nursing homes double-charging residents, and I have legislation tabled to end that scandal.

“I will also continue to fight the government on the scandalous housing crisis and lack of affordable homes in Louth and across the state, hospital appointment waiting lists and other health issues, such as cancer patients having to fight to get medical cards.

“I stand up for Drogheda and East Meath in addressing the ongoing drugs gang feud and the horrific violence we’ve seen in our communities as a result of that.

“I have a reputation of never being afraid to speak up for the people I represent and if I’m fortunate enough to be re-elected I will continue this work.”

Councillor Ruairí Ó Murchú has been a formidable force on Louth County Council since 2017. During this time he has used his position to highlight many of the issues affecting the people of Louth.

Ruairí is currently campaigning for a Primary Care Centre and a CAMHS facility in Dundalk.

Ruairí is the Chairperson of Louth Drug and Alcohol Forum and is very active on community safety and works with the Gardaí and other agencies to tackle drug abuse.

Speaking after the convention, Cllr Ruairí Ó Murchú said:

“I am ambitious for Louth, I believe that different choices should be made and that’s why I want to retain two Sinn Féin TDs for this constituency. 

“I do not want to live in a country where children are forced to eat, sleep and live on the streets, where people wait years for medical procedures, where families cannot access respite and other essential supports.

“I want to live in a United Ireland with an equitable health system, where people have the right to a home, where the economy serves the people rather than the other way around.”

Adams calls for implementation of UN Con. on Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Sinn Féin Louth TD Gerry Adams joined with party colleagues on Tuesday evening in the Dáil in demanding that the government do more to deliver on the rights contained in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. He commended Louth Groups and individuals who advocate their services for citizens with disabilities.

He said: “They provide much needed supports for citizens in this constituency with disabilities and have fought a battle a day with successive governments over the lack of funding, planning and resources. It took 11 years for the government to ratify the UN Convention. This is totally contrary to the Convention and is unacceptable.”

In March this year, 11 years after the state signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Government finally ratified the Convention.

On Tuesday, at a briefing with a range of disability groups the difficulties confronting citizens with disabilities, including the lack of planning, resources and funding, were discussed.

Gerry Adams TD said:

“The eventual ratification by the government of the UN Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was an important step forward. However, it is meaningless if the Convention is not implemented in full and if the legislation needed to achieve this is not enacted by the Oireachtas.

That means that the Government must ratify the Optional Protocol, as they had previously promised. In addition, the Assisted-Decision Making (Capacity) Act 2015 remains at a standstill with the essential establishment of a Decision Support Service still awaited. We also need progress on the enactment of the Disability (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2016.

Today in a briefing organised by Teachta O Caoláin, Shelley Gaynor and James Cawley from Independent Living Movement Ireland; Sarah Lennon, Inclusion Ireland; Kathy Moore, Rehab Ireland; Allen Dunne, Disability Federation of Ireland and Joan Carthy, Irish Wheelchair Association; told us that without adequate services citizens living with disabilities are like prisoners.

In Louth I work with many groups and individuals who advocate for services for people with disabilities; groups like the Parents and Friends of the Intellectually Disabled; Louth Respite Group; WALK Peer, and others. I commend them all”.

Joanna Byrne Selected for Drogheda Urban in 2019 Elections

Sitting Councillor Joanna Byrne has been selected to run in the 2019 Local Government Elections for the constituency of Drogheda Urban.

Joanna was nominated by the Chair of the Bobby Sands Cumann Hughie McShane who said “I am very proud to stand here in front of you all to nominate Joanna. The Cumann has come a long way and we now have Imelda Munster as a TD who we are very proud of and Joanna who has been an outstanding councilor and we know she will continue to be just that. Joanna brought a fresh approach and a new enthusiasm to the Cumann when she joined it and is always ready for a challenge. She is a strong defender of the rights for all, following in the footsteps of Imelda. I am very proud of them both.”

Joanna accepted the nomination and paid tribute to Hughie who she described as the “driving force behind the cumann. The last 2 years have been a whirlwind and there

The team with Hughie McShane far right

have been plenty of highs and lows and challenges but it has been a great experience and I couldn’t have done it without Kenneth (Flood) and Imelda and more recently David (Saurin). Imelda keeps us a very tight team and her precedence on the Council is so appreciated. She taught us that we can debate an issue but we go into the chamber as a unit and we stand as one.”

Joanna also paid tribute to her Mam Martina “she is always by my side and the support

Joanna and her Mam, Martina

I get from her and my siblings is unbelievable. She is doing work that no-one else sees, out in all weathers leafleting and supporting me and guiding me. I appreciate that Mam and of course, she looks after me which can be the biggest job of all.”

Joanna also welcomed Tom Cunningham to the Drogheda team from Mid-Louth.

Imelda Munster TD rounded the evening off by thanking the “grassroots members who a the ones that have helped the party grow from strength to strength by talking to people and communities and relaying that back to the reps. I have always said that if we lead, people will follow but we have to provide that leadership. We need to stay true to who we are, we hold officials to account for the betterment of our communities, we are always pushing for the best interests of the people. We can’t fail if we speak for the people. Despite the challenges thrown at us, the attempted isolation of us by other parties and large sections of the media, just look at what we have achieved. People aren’t stupid, they see through all their dirty tricks. We started with 5 Cumann members and we worked hard over the years and people see that.

“People will be proud to vote Sinn Féin, they know we are not afraid to speak out, they know that their voice will be heard through us. The hard work starts now though. We are a unit on Louth County Council, we are committed and true and we will build and build and continue to build after that.”

The new line up so far in Drogheda

 

Kenneth Flood Selected to Run in 2019 Elections for Drogheda Urban

Kenneth Flood with his wife Jenny and son.

Sitting councilor Kenneth Flood has been selected by Sinn Féin to run in the 2019 local elections for the Party.

Imelda Munster TD proposed Kenneth and said “Ken is always in touch with and communicating with people on the ground. He is diligent and hard working so I have no problem standing here to propose him. Kenneth is meticulous in his research of an issue, to the point of being a nerd, which is a good thing and stands to him. The Drogheda team have always

Kenneth with his proposer Imelda Munster TD

worked well together and Kenneth is not afraid to hold management of any organization to account and he’s not afraid to take on officials. He always represents the people and has never forgot that is what he is there for.”

Kenneth Flood then accepted the nomination and thanked “the Bobby Sands Cumann who have been a great support. We work hard in communities because that’s where we are from and we want to better them for everyone. The Cumann and I do the work where and when it needs done, that’s what we do and that’s what I hope to continue to do after next year.”

The new line up so far in Drogheda