Speaking in Dublin today, Gerry Adams welcomed the announcement of a date for by-elections in Dublin South West and Roscommon/South Leitrim. Mr Adams was accompanied by Sinn Féin Cllr Martin Kenny, the party's candidate in Roscommon/South Leitrim and Cllr Cathal King who is the candidate in Dublin South West.
Gerry Adams TD said:
"Sinn Féin welcomes the moving of the writs for the by elections in Dublin South West and Roscommon/South Leitrim.
"Thanks to the court case taken by Sinn Féin's Pearse Doherty TD, governments can no longer drag out or delay indefinitely the holding of by-elections.
"In these by-elections, voters in Dublin South West and in Roscommon/South Leitrim face an important choice between the failed politics of the past – the politics of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and Labour - and the alternative offered by Sinn Féin.
"This is a choice between the politics of those who see ordinary working people as an easy target, or a party that stands with citizens dependent on public services, and who are trying to improve their standard of living.
"These by-elections offer a political choice between fairness and unfairness.
"Voters in Roscommon/South Leitrim and in Dublin South West have been let down by this government and most see little or no sign of the recovery which Fine Gael and Labour has been speaking about.
"Citizens are trying to cope with crumbling health services – just look at Roscommon Hospital. "They are trying to cope with an unfair family home tax and are dreading water bills in the new year.
"They are trying to cope with unacceptably high rates of unemployment and the scandal of mass emigration.
"Only Sinn Féin TDs will be part of strong and growing party in the Dáil voting against unfair cuts and austerity budgets, committed to the abolition of the property tax, to opposing water charges and to defending our public services.
"In both Dublin South West and Roscommon/South Leitrim, Sinn Féin is putting forward our alternatives and asking voters to make the change and to vote for Cathal King and Martin Kenny.
"Sinn Féin will seek a mandate for budget resources to be targeted at supporting job creation and stimulating economic growth across all regions which can end the scourge of mass emigration.
"We will argue for the adoption of a housing policy which delivers the necessary social housing stock to meet the needs of those languishing on waiting lists.
"For opposition to further cuts to the health budget
"For increased funding for mental health provision and for a resolution of the government’s continuing Medical Cards debacle.
"For radical political and institutional reform which addresses the lack of accountability and transparency within the Oireachtas, government departments and the policing and justice system.
"For a strengthening of the peace process and a united Ireland.
"Sinn Féin's platform is that there is a clear, workable and fairer alternative to the way this government is doing things.
"We will fight these campaigns to win and to bring another two Sinn Féin TDs to join our Oireachtas team."