Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald this morning launched the clár for the party’s Ard Fheis which takes place in the Wexford Opera House on Friday 7 and Saturday 8 February.
Deputy McDonald was joined at the launch by Sinn Féin European election candidates Lynn Boylan and Matt Carthy and by the MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone Michelle Gildernew.
“We are looking forward to an upbeat and positive Ard Fheis next week.
“The theme of the Ard Fheis is ‘Putting Ireland First’ and that is the message that our European election candidate will be taking to the people in the upcoming elections. Our MEPs will not simply accept diktats from Europe that are not good for the Irish people. They will stand up for Irish interests at all times.
“We go into this Ard Fheis at a time when people are crying out for political reform and our party just this week launched our proposals on that front.
“Scandals such as the top-ups scandal, the Irish Water debacle, issues at CRC and Rehab and the penalty points issue have reminded the general public that corruption and cronyism are as alive and well under Fine Gael and Labour as they were under Fianna Fáil.
“The old ways of cute hoorism and looking after your own need to be weeded out of Irish society and this will be one of the key themes of this Ard Fheis.
“And of course the economy will be a big topic of discussion at the Ard Fheis. With so many families missing loved ones who have been forced to leave the country many people will be looking on to see what ideas Sinn Féin has to turn the economy around, to create high quality jobs and conditions under which their loved ones might be able to return.
“Advancing the peace process and dealing with the legacy of the past will also be a key theme at this Ard Fheis as we continue in our attempts to get the Haass proposals over the line.
“Sinn Féin committed to these proposals and their implementation. We need to see the same commitment from the British and Irish Governments.” ENDS