Louth Sinn Féin have nominated two candidates to go forward in the General Election for the Louth Meath East constituency. They are sitting TD Gerry Adams who topped the poll in 2011 and Drogheda Councillor Imelda Munster who topped the poll in the council elections in May 2014.
Party President Gerry Adams was proposed by the Chair od Halpenny Worthington Watters Cumann in Dundalk, JJ Quigley, and seconded by Councillor Edel Corrigan.
Imelda Munster was proposed by the Chair of the Bobby Sands Cumann in Drogheda, Hughie McShane and seconded by Joanne Walsh.
The convention was held in the Westcourt Hotel in Drogheda and Imelda was a very popular choice. Imelda has been a councillor for over 10 years and is well known for her ideas against cronyism and her push for value for money on the Council. Within the last few months, she succeeded in getting the top-up payments awarded to chairs within the Council, abolished and the money added to the Housing Adaptation Scheme. Unfortunately this did not sit well with FG/Lab and they sought to have the decision overturned and their bonus top-up money given back to them. (One IND has since said he would give the payment to charity).
A spokesperson last night said “Imelda has been a constant thorn in the side of the other Parties on Louth County Council and we have no doubt she will carry that tradition through to Leinster House. Imelda has worked tirelessly over the years and is always looking for ways in which to improve ordinary people’s everyday lives. The people of Drogheda know that when Imelda is at a Council meeting, they are being represented at that meeting.”
Last night’s acceptance speech by Imelda Munster was greeted with great applause. After a number of requests, we are reproducing it here.
It is a great honour and privilege for me to accept this nomination to fly the flag for Sinn Féin along with our TD and Party President Gerry Adams, at the next General Election, whenever that might be! I want to start by thanking each and every one of you for coming along tonight and for putting your faith in me. It’s an incredible honour. Thank you to Hugh Mc Shane and Joanne Walsh . As a party, we’ve made great progress in this constituency. Through the hard work and determination of our party activists and elected representatives we have seen huge growth. This has been a fantastic achievement. There isn’t a blade of grass in this Dáil constituency that hasn’t a Sinn Féin public representative representing it. That’s progress. And it doesn’t happen by chance. It’s the result of hard work. So thank you and congratulations to everyone who worked so hard to get us this far.
In the upcoming campaign we need to build on that hard work to ensure that we take a second Dáil seat in this constituency for the first time ever, because one thing’s for sure, Ireland needs a strong Sinn Féin team in Leinster House next time out. We need that strong Sinn Fein Team in Leinster house to ensure that the unfairness, the inequality, the protecting of the elite, and the cruel and devasting policies of austerity of FG/FF and Labour are banished in to the dustbin of history. You only have to look at Louth to see the misery this government’s policies have caused..
Seriously ill people lying on trollies or left sitting on chairs for days on end in OLOL Hospital here in Drogheda and patients having to wait years for operations or procedures whilst they close wards and theatres in in the Louth county hospital in Dundalk and surrounding hospitals. Elderly people denied access to basic housing adaptations, and home care packages and the removal of respite and long stay beds in the Cottage Hospital in Drogheda. The Local Property Tax that people have been forced to pay which the government said was to fund local services…Yet when they got it they did not give one cent of it for local services instead they pumped the 439 million collected in to the setting up Irish Water.
THIS YEAR, YES, this year they are taking our motor tax, the money that you and I pay for the upkeep of our roads and they are pumping two-thirds of it in to the quango that is Irish Water. Unemployment rife across our communities. 6473 unemployed in Drogheda alone. Super Minister for Jobs Deputy Ged Mash has not delivered as much as one job for Drogheda. Housing Crisis as Fr Peter Mc Verry has said “we are on the cusp of a tsunami of homelessness. We have 4325 people on the housing list in Louth, LPT, Emigration and Water Tax…. delivered by our other local ex minister Deputy O Dowd.
The only thing this government can rightly claim to have delivered is this list of misery that they have inflicted on their own people the ordinary working man and woman of Ireland.
This next general election is vitally important, it is vitally important for the politics of change on this island.
In my mind’s eye I can see the United Ireland of Equals we strive for. I can see it. It’s an all-Ireland socialist republic where your parents wage or education does not determine yours; where how much you earn does not determine the standard of public services you get; where your postal address does not determine the likelihood of a life of crime or addiction, suffering; or the right to a job and where all the children of the nation have the opportunity to have a full and prosperous life.
It’s an Ireland where those who can afford to pay more do pay more, and are willing to do so, because they know they’ll get greater public services and they understand that all of society benefits from equality. I will finish on this note In my mind’s eye too I can see the sacrifice that so many great Irish men and women made down through the years – a number of them are in this room tonight – a sacrifice they made so that people like me could deliver on their vision through politics.
Through the battle for hearts and minds. I mean this from the bottom of my heart. This movement, this struggle, this party and all that we stand for, means everything to me. I will do everything I can with your help and support to ensure I don’t let you the people down. Go raibh míle míle maith agaibh.