Commenting on the publication of the Department of Finance's Review of Property-based Tax Incentive Schemes, Sinn Féin Dáil leader and Finance spokesperson Caoimhghin Ó Caoláin said: "This report exposes the massive waste of public money involved in these property-based tax reliefs. They have rewarded developers and speculators and were introduced and continued without any cost-benefit analysis. Only now are we getting an estimate of their cost.
"The Report makes clear that these tax reliefs have been seen as primarily as incentives for the construction industry. But they have poured public money into a booming private sector for developments that would have happened anyway, as is clear from the Report. This is public money that should have been spent directly on providing the infrastructure and social services we need. Instead it has mostly benefited individuals whom the Report estimates earn at least €100,000 per year.
"€37 million has been spent on tax breaks for Private Hospitals, thus rewarding the wealthy operators of the thriving private health industry and reinforcing the two-tier public-private system. No public money should have been spent on private hospitals yet the Finance Bill actually extends this tax relief.
"Almost €330 million in tax reliefs has been given to developers of private hospitals, private nursing homes, hotels, holiday cottages and multi-storey car parks. While this Report pulls its punches it can only be read as a damning indictment of Government policy when it recommends that 'the decision to introduce any new tax incentives should be informed by a formal assessment of the likely costs and benefits'. That such a recommendation has to be made now so many years after these reliefs were introduced is a scandal." ENDS
Sinn Féin's Dublin Spokesperson on the Environment, Councillor Daithí Doolan, will tonight table an Emergency Motion calling on Dublin City Council, "to take legal action, including Compulsory Purchase Orders, to ensure that all private parks and squares are opened up to the public in Dublin."
Speaking ahead of tonight's City Council meeting, Cllr. Doolan said, "I will be tabling an Emergency Motion at tonight's Council meeting demanding that City Council use Compulsory Purchase Orders on any private parks or squares with a view to opening them up to the public. The serious issues surrounding Dartmouth Square in Rathmines have clearly shown that private parks have no role in a modern city. It is totally unacceptable that the taxpayer was funding the upkeep and maintenance of a private square and we have a right to know how many other parks are we maintaining for private landlords. My motion will also call on Council officials to carry out an inventory of Dublin's private parks and squares maintained by City Council to ascertain who legally owns these parks & squares and to obtain appropriate legal title, including exercising Council's power of compulsory acquire title, over the ownership of these maintained parks & squares.'
In conclusion Cllr. Doolan, called on Management, "to initiate the legal proceedings as soon as possible and ensure that private parks become a thing of the past in today's Dublin." ENDS
For further information call Cllr. Daithí Doolan 086-8534666.
Emergency Motion reads:
In light of the issues concerning Dartmouth Square and to protect public access to all parks & squares maintained by Dublin City Council. This Council resolves:
a) To carry out an inventory of Dublin's private parks and squares maintained by City Council
b) Ascertain who legally owns these parks & squares,
c) To obtain appropriate legal title, including exercising Council's power of compulsory acquire title, over the ownership of these maintained parks & squares
d) To use Compulsory Purchase Orders on any other private parks or squares with a view to opening them up to the public.
The DUP Mayor of Coleraine Cllr Timothy Deans has apologised to Sinn Féin councillor Billy Leonard for trying to exclude him and his colleagues from a Christmas reception, paid for by the ratepayers.It is thought that this is the first time a DUP representative has had to admit that he acted against the law and apologise to a Sinn Féin representative as a result of legal proceedings. Seven unionist councillors now face the threat of being surcharged as a result.
Cllr Leonard instigated High Court proceedings against the Mayor and Coleraine Borough Council under Equality legislation. It is believed that the council received legal advice to settle out of court because they were on very weak legal ground and Leonard was bound to win.
The Sinn Féin councillor said:
"This was a clear cut case of misrepresenting the ratepayer. The DUP mayor tried to pursue his party policy of excluding Sinn Féin from a function paid for by the ratepayer. It didn‚t work and perhaps the DUP in Coleraine and elsewhere will learn from this episode.
"There may be only one Sinn Féin councillor on Coleraine Borough Council but we as a party are determined to pick our challenges wisely. I believe this is the first time that the DUP have admitted that they acted against the law and apologised to a Sinn Féin representative.
"Eight months into this Council term and Sinn Féin has drawn a firm line against unionist intransigence and there will be more."
And Leonard is determined not to let the question of costs rest.
"Sinn Féin has already notified the Local Government Auditor of its opinion that the seven councillors who voted for this exclusion should be personally liable for the costs of this case. Local electors will now take the necessary action to instigate this process.
"Seven councillors cannot act in this way and think there is no comeback. That is why Sinn Féin proposed a motion before the event and demanded a recorded vote. If six DUP councillors, including the Mayor, and one Ulster Unionist councillor believe that they can act against equality legislation they need to pay for the case that has proved otherwise." ENDS
Sinn Féin North Antrim MLA Philip McGuigan has expressed his concern at the undue delay in processing applications for disabled grant aid. The Sinn Féin Office in Dunloy has recently dealt with constituents, who have faced such lengthy delays, that they have passed away before their applications have been dealt with.
Mr McGuigan said:
"The first point of delay for applicants is waiting for the Occupational Therapist's (OTs) visit for assessment which can be up to a year in some cases. The next hold-up is for a referral to the Housing Executive for Grant Aid, followed by yet another waiting period to account for means testing, to see if an applicant qualifies for a grant. Again the wait can be quite lengthy. In many instances it is then passed onto the Housing Organisation FOLD for the tendering process.
"This entire process is clearly much too lengthy, especially given the sometimes terminal conditions of those applying. One example of this is how people are sometimes subjected to the ongoing indignity of a bed-bath as opposed to a shower.
"The red tape involved in disabled grant aid is absolutely enormous. And whilst I welcome the move to direct referrals to OTs by-passing other agencies, from the 1st February, I do not think it goes far enough, especially given the fact that there is an acute shortage of OTs in the first place.
"There is also a similar problem regarding the waiting list to see a rheumatologist in the Causeway Trust Area. The delay for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and associated conditions can be over 2 years.
"If measures were taken to shorten this the condition could be arrested at a much earlier stage as opposed to the patient suffering unnecessarily."ENDS
Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams has extended his "deepest sympathy and condolences
to the family of Eileen Haddock (nee Hickey) who has died after a long and
courageous battle against illness."
Mr. Adams said:
"Eileen comes from one of those spinal Belfast republican families which in times of great danger and challenge helped organise and sustain the republican struggle. In 1973 she was arrested and spent four and a half years in prison. While there she was Armagh Women's Prison's first Republican O.C. (Officer Commanding). She formed the women prisoners into a coherent republican structure and was a determined spokesperson for them in negotiations and arguments with the prison administration.
On her release in 1977 she returned to republican activism. She was a stalwart,hard working republican enormously respected by all who knew her.
She also returned to education and qualified as a teacher. Eileen recognised
that there was a section of children and young people falling out of full
time education in West Belfast. Some were being expelled, some just dropped
out, and others were having real problems learning in the formal classroom
environment. She began teaching in Fr. Des Wilson's Springhill project. In
subsequently in Conway Mill when the school moved there, Eileen proved an
effective teacher. She had a remarkable ability to motivate the young people
she taught. She also was principally responsible for introducing exams into
the curriculum for the youngsters.
Conway Mill is also renowned for its art and theatre activities and Eileen
ensured that these were an integral part of the experience of the young
people who attended her classes.
Eileen and her husband Johnny Haddock were very much part of the Sean O'Neill craft shop which provided local artists and designers an opportunity to showcase their work. And she was also very much involved in the 'Prisoners Day' exhibition held each August in the Felon's Club as part of Féile an Phobail. Eileen and several close friends and colleagues were very keen on opening a museum in the Mill that would reflect the story of
republicanism in Belfast. They established the Irish republican History Museum Committee and were given the An tSean Mhuillean club in the Mill as the site for their museum. This has required much refurbishment and the gathering of artefacts from the 1940s and on.
Eileen published an excellent book, entitled 'Essays on Irish History through Verse' the proceeds from which went to the Museum. In many ways all of this was entirely appropriate. Conway Mill was very much at the heart of events in 1969. In its shadow Catholic families were driven from their homes by loyalist mobs and the RUC and later, as Fr. Des, Tom Cahill, Eileen and others tried to maximise the potential of Conway Mill to provide employment in west Belfast, it was one of the first projects to suffer political
vetting by the British government. In 2003 mural artists honoured those visionaries who in 1982 established Conway Mill and included on the mural, which can still be seen, is Eileen and Elsie Best.
Eileen was a dedicated republican activist and community leader who made a significant contribution to improving the quality of life of many of those she came into contact with, particularly the young people.
To her family and friends I want to extend on behalf of the entire republican community and the people of west Belfast our deepest sympathies and condolences." ENDS
On the eve of the commencement of talks on the restoration of the
institutions Sinn Féin Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness has called on the British government to "lift the suspension of the political institutions as quickly as possible as a means to injecting much needed renewed momentum and confidence back into the process.'
Mr. McGuinness said:
'It is undeniable that the situation today is entirely transformed from what is was 10 or 20 years ago.
Following the IRA initiatives of last year the potential for further significant political progress and stability has never been better.
The republican contribution to all of this has been substantial and is irrefutable. At every step Sinn Féin has given clear leadership, we have taken risks for peace and made the hard decisions.
Republicans have been, along with others, the peace makers.
But there are those whose objective is to wreck the peace - the peace breakers. They are to be found in the unionist political parties who hanker after the old days of unionist domination. They are in the Special Branch and British security system.
They are the people who provide the unsubstantiated allegations, including DUP supporters in the Special Branch, that make up the nonsense which is presented as an IMC report.
The two governments need to deal with the absurdity of this situation.
The commencement of the talks tomorrow is evidence, we are told, of the two governments clear intention to sdee the political institutions restored to full working order in this year.
Consequently, the next few months will be the most challenging and crucial since the Good Friday Agreement was signed.
In my view most people are fed up with the endless, repetitive circular arguments that pass for politics. Each day brings more news of job losses, cutbacks, reviews in public spending, changes to our health, education and other services, and all being done by unaccountable British Ministers.
This is an untenable situation. It obviously does not serve the interests of nationalists and unionists.
Tomorrow presents an opportunity to change all of this. Hard choices will soon have to be made by the DUP." ENDS
Mid-Ulster MP Martin Mc Guinness has expressed his shock at the tragic news of the deaths of Anne Mc Bride and her daughter Shauneen and the injuries to three other family members in a road traffic accident near Cookstown on Friday evening.
Mr Mc Guinness said:
“I extend my sincere condolences to my friend Damien and the wider Mc Bride family in these tragic circumstances. My thoughts and prayers are with them and I wish a speedy recovery to the other family members who were injured in the accident.
“I have known the Mc Bride family for many years and I can only imagine the pain and suffering that they are experiencing at this terrible time. I send my condolences and those of the republican family on their bereavement to the Mc Bride family.” ENDS
At their National Congress in Dublin this afternoon, Ógra Shinn Féin launced a nationwide suicide prevention campaign. This campaign will focus on the dissemination of information and the demand for an all Ireland approach to suicide awareness. It will also lobby the Irish and British governments to ensure that suicide prevention receives the priority, the funding and resources it requires.
Announcing details of the campaign Ógra Shinn Féin National Executive member from Derry Andrea O’Keane said:
“People taking their own lives or attempting to take their own lives is a major social issue on the island of Ireland. It is estimated internationally that 1 million people take their own lives every year. Ireland has the second highest suicide rate in Europe, this rate has increased by more than 25% over the last decade. Suicide is the biggest killer of young people in Ireland therefore it is imperative that Ógra begin campaigning and disseminating information on this issue.
“There were 577 reported deaths by suicide in the year 2003-2004, a greater death toll than the number of people killed in road traffic accidents over the same time period and although statistics are strikingly high amongst young men, suicide transcends class, gender, and age, ethnic or religious background. It is suggested that the death toll from suicide over the last 35 years may be even greater than the number of people killed as a result of the political conflict.
“Ógra Shinn Féin’s campaign will focus on the dissemination of information and the demand for an all Ireland approach to suicide awareness. It will also lobby the Irish and British governments to ensure that suicide prevention receives the priority, the funding and resources it requires.
Speaking at the Congress Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams MP commended their campaign on suicide awareness and prevention. The Sinn Fein leader also revealed that the Minister of Health Mary Harney has yet to formally reply to repeated requests from him to meet on the issue of suicide prevention.
Mr. Adams said:
“Ireland has the second highest incidence of suicide in Europe. That
is a startling and depressing statistic which disguises the human cost in
lives lost and of families bereaved and left grieving.
It is the biggest killer of young people in our country. That makes suicide a national disaster. Our country urgently needs a national plan to address this crisis.
In the 26 Counties the government established a Suicide Task Force some
years ago which has seen welcome progress being made. In the north we need a
regional plan for suicide prevention.
But the issue of suicide also needs to be tackled on an all-Ireland basis. Specifically it should be made an area of co-operation under the auspices of the North-South Ministerial Council.
In that context I welcome meetings between the Health Minister Mary Harney and the British Health Minister Shaun Woodward.
However, I have yet to receive a formal response from the Minister of Health Mary Harney to repeated requests from me for a meeting to discuss this issue. I first asked for a meeting with her in May of last year and my office has been in regular contact with Ms Harney’s officials since then.
Concern about suicide is greatest in local communities. Alongside the
anguish of bereavement, there is a growing sense of burn-out. Families do
not receive the support they need to cope with the strain of someone who is
feeling suicidal, or with the aftermath of someone who takes his or her own
life. Many other parents carry a sense of dread, worrying about the fate of
their own children.
The Ógra Shinn Féin Suicide prevention campaign being launched today is aimed at increasing awareness about this problem, particularly but not exclusively among young people.”ENDS
Speaking after the debate in the European Parliament Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de
Brún has called for EU member states to take a more coordinated approach
to tackling violence agains women.
Ms de Brún said:
"Violence against women is a fundamental violation of human rights and reflects the continuing unequal gender power relations in our society.
"EU member states need to adopt an approach in policy making capable of encompassing all of this issue, including effective methods of prevention and punishment.
"We need to establish in fact a zero tolerance attitude to all forms of violence against women, and to adopt a framework for cooperation between governmental and non-governmental organisations with a view to developing policies and practices to combat the phenomenon of domestic violence.
"The EU should also consider the appointment of national rapporteurs to gather, exchange and process information and statistics on men's violence against women, including information on children growing up in violent environments, and promote the exchange of best practice between Member States and the accession and candidate countries.
"In addition we need to see appropriate education and training for professionals responsible for recording incidents and data relating to domestic violence so that they carry out their duties with the required consistency.
"These are just some of the measures contained in a detailed report by Maria Carlshamre MEP which the European Parliament has now adopted with overwhelming support.I strongly endorse Mrs Carlshamre's report and recommendations and urge all MEPs and member state governments to implement these as a matter of urgency." ENDS
Sinn Féin Education spokesperson Seán Crowe TD has said the Education Minister Mary Hanafin "must urgently address the problems facing primary school principals before we have a crisis on our hands." Speaking after attending the annual conference of the Irish Primary Principals Network deputy Crowe said the Minister "has a brass neck coming to this conference only to tell delegates to stop moaning."
He said, "Minister Hanafin has a brass neck coming here only to tell delegates to stop moaning. If she was on top of her brief primary school teachers would have nothing to moan about.
"Rather than patronising delegates with her arrogant remarks the Minister must urgently address the problems facing primary school principles before we have a serious crisis on our hands. There needs to be a job description in place for primary principles, one that properly befits the role of the school leader along professional standards and there should be a contract put in place with a proper salary structure to encourage people to aspire to become a school principals." ENDS
Sinn Féin Fisheries spokesperson Martin Ferris TD has congratulated the fishermen who took part in today's protest against the new fisheries legislation. Deputy Ferris encouraged the fishermen to keep the pressure on the Government until they finally get the message that this Bill is totally unacceptable.
He said, "Having been in touch with the many of the fishermen who took part in today's protests including the fishermen from Kerry and from Cork I am aware of the level of anger and determination throughout the whole country. I congratulate the men on the way they conducted themselves today in what was a very successful protest and I would encourage them to continue to put pressure on the Government until they finally get the message that this Bill is unacceptable.
"For my part I will continue to speak out against the Bill and push for my amendments to be adopted to overturn the punitive measures that the Bill contains. I will also continue to point out that the Common Fisheries Policy, which has been a disaster for the Irish fishing industry must be completely overhauled." ENDS
Speaking in advance of this weekends Ogra Sinn Féin conference and next weeks political talks Sinn Fein Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness MP today said that the Sinn Fein focus in the coming period was to defend the Good Friday Agreement and press ahead with the restoration of the institutions. Mr McGuinness also criticised the current approach of the SDLP in entertaining proposals outside the terms of the Agreement.
Mr McGuinness said:
“Our agenda for Mondays talks is clear. We will be seeking to defend the Good Friday Agreement and we will be seeking to hold the two governments to their stated objective of seeing a speedy restoration of the political institutions.
“Sinn Féin are not interested in half way houses or institutions without full powers. That is the agenda of those who wish to slow down and stall the process of change.
“Sinn Féin, as the largest nationalist and pro-Agreement party, will not allow ourselves to be deflected from the task ahead. People voted for the Agreement and they voted for fully functioning power sharing and all-Ireland institutions. The two governments have a responsibility to reassert the primacy of the political process and the way to do this is by restoring speedily the political institutions and pressing ahead with acting upon the other outstanding matters.
“It is disappointing that the SDLP have given succour to those within the DUP and elsewhere who are seeking to hollow out the power sharing core of the Agreement. The DUP have stated that they have common ground with the SDLP on their proposals for institutions less than the Agreement. The SDLP have themselves admitted being in discussions with the DUP and that they are considering options less than the Good Friday Agreement.
“This is entirely the wrong approach. It mirrors the approach adopted by the SDLP on policing, when they jumped too soon and accepted too little. The SDLP have now become part of the policing establishment and are rewarded with honours from the English Queen. The SDLP now act as cheer leaders for political and partisan policing irrationally opposing Sinn Féin’s efforts to achieve further necessary policing changes
“They have now also set themselves apart form the vast majority of nationalist opinion by accepting without question the unsubstantiated rubbish that makes up the so-called IMC report. In this they have again found common ground with the most negative and extreme voices in the DUP.
“The SDLP have lost their way on a new and entirely anti-republican leadership. The success of Hume/Adams has been replaced by rabid and increasingly hysterical attacks on the Sinn Féin leadership. Their singular focus on Sinn Féin allows the Unionists, the British government and the securocrats off the hook. They need to put the interest of those they represent and the need to see the Good Friday Agreement implemented above their narrow party political resentments and insecurities.” ENDS
Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún will meet with representatives of West Belfast
based Irish Langauge Development Body Fobairt Feirste at their Falls Road
offices 'An Nasc' later morning (11.00am) to receive an update on progress
with plans for the development of a designated 'Gaeltacht Quarter' in West
Fobairt Feirste has been working along with other Irish Language and Business interests in partnership with representatives of DCAL. DSD and DETI to progress the recommendation of the West Belfast and Greater Shankill Task Force for the creation of a Gaeltacht Quarter Development Board and the creation of a designated Gaeltacht Quarter centred on the Irish Language corridor on the Falls Road.
Speaking today Ms de Brún said:
"Today's briefing with Fobairt Feirste provides an opportunity to receive an update on developments for the Gaeltacht Quarter in the heart of West Belfast. The Irish language has been thriving in recent years across the city of Belfast. In spite of government neglect and indifference to the language both north and south, the Irish language community has worked hard to ensure the sustainability of the education system, cultural and economic sectors.
"The plans for the development of the Gaeltacht Quarter are both exciting and ambitious and are rooted in the recommendation of the Ministerial Task Force which recognised the unique regeneration opportunity presented by properly resourced development of the cultural cluster centred on the Falls Road into a designated Gaeltacht Quarter. Such a development would compliment the massive revival of the language and promote a self
contained area where language enthusiasts can live and work. It would also open up further employment opportunities for Irish speakers and is a unique selling point for the City of Belfast in terms of attracting visitors and potential investors to a vibrant and unique cultural quarter. The Gaeltacht Quarter would undoubtedly become a long term tourist and regeneration centre on the Falls Road.
"It is now essential that there is a strategic focus between local businesses, the Irish language sector, the relevant British government departments and Belfast City Council to prime-pump activity in the area and to the develop a comprehensive business case and development plan for the Gaeltacht Quarter.
"The recent decision to designate Irish as an official working language of the European Union is a testament to the tenacity of Irish language enthusiasts from across Ireland to influence European decision-making. A similar level of commitment to the Gaeltacht Quarter will ensure it comes to fruition and receives the support of the local community as well as that of government.
"I will be also looking to other European regions to look at similar cultural-based regeneration models with a view to facilitating linkages and partnerships and to seeing what lessons which can be learned from them." ENDS
Note to Editor:
Forbairt Feirste was established in 1994 to 'promote our cultural heritage through economic regeneration'. The organisation's main aim is 'the creation of jobs and new opportunities for Belfast's' Irish speaking community'.
The Sinn Féin Fisheries Spokesperson, Martin Ferris TD, has voiced his support for today’s protests by fishermen at ports around the country. The protest is being held in opposition to the proposed new fisheries legislation currently being debated in the Dáil. Fishermen are objecting to what they claim are measures designed to criminalise them.
Deputy Ferris said: “The current Bill is unacceptable to almost everyone involved in the Irish fishing industry. In seeking to impose massive penalties and bring large areas of activity under the criminal courts, it is completely at odds with the practise in other EU states. I have already spoken against the Bill and have tabled a large number of amendments which seek to overturn the punitive measures which it contains. I will also continue to point out that the Common Fisheries Policy, which has been a disaster for the Irish fishing industry must be completely overhauled.” ENDS
Speaking after a debate with Junior Justice Minister Frank Fahey Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Equality and Human Rights, Aengus Ó Snodaigh accused the Minister of not understanding the Good Friday Agreement and of being unsuitable for his position.
Deputy Ó Snodaigh said, “By admitting that he does not accept that there is a shortfall between the equality protections in this State and those in the Six Counties and by arguing that the Government is not bound by equivalence provisions of the Good Friday Agreement, Junior Minister Frank Fahey has shown a complete lack of understanding of the Agreement and hence his unsuitability for his position. Frank Fahey needs to sit down, read the Good Friday Agreement and listen to the Equality Authority.
Speaking during the debate in the Dáil today Deputy Ó Snodaigh accused the Government of not living up to its Good Friday Agreement commitments by failing to deliver on obligations under Strand 3 to ensure in this State “at least an equivalent level of protection of human rights” with that pertaining to the six counties and he called on Justice Minister Michael McDowell to bring forward amendments to equality legislation to bring human rights and equality protections in line with those in the North.
He said, “In 1998, when the Irish people cast their vote in favour of the Good Friday Agreement they correctly believed and expected that the rights protections won by Republicans under the Agreement would benefit them also. The Minister has been whittling away equality protections and refusing to entertain any notion of a rights-based society - he is trampling on the expressed will of the people of this island.
"The joint report of the Equality Authority and Commission re-affirms Sinn Fein’s conclusion and proves that the government has failed to deliver on its obligations under Strand 3 of the Good Friday Agreement. And that the government have failed thus far to ensure in this state ‘at least an equivalent level of protection of human rights’ with that pertaining to the six counties. And consequently is also in breach of its own Programme for Government statement that full implementation of all aspects of the Good Friday Agreement is the government’s ‘top priority’.”
Deputy Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister “when will he deliver these long overdue acts of completion and when will he address the ‘equivalence failings’ identified by Sinn Fein and now also identified by the Equality Authority and Commission including:
· limitations in this state’s European Convention on Human Rights Act 2003;
· limitations in the scope of this state’s equality legislation with regard to disability, public function, political opinion, and enforcement and remedies;
· limitations in the treatment of transexual people and gay and lesbian people in this state; and
· the absence of positive duties to promote equality.” ENDS
Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh today moved a Bill in the Dáil calling for the legislation that brought the Independent Monitoring Commission in to being to be repealed. Deputy Ó Snodaigh described yesterday’s report from the IMC as "farcical" and said it was "nothing more than a permit for prevarication” that the two Governments "foolishly" handed to the rejectionist unionists. He pointed out that more than €1.5 million per year had been spent by the Irish Government on the IMC since its establishment in 2003.
Deputy Ó Snodaigh said, "It is quiet clear to even the most narrow-minded of observers of the peace process that the so-called Independent Monitoring Commission is nothing of the sort. Its farcical report yesterday, which once again relies on anonymous and unsubstantiated allegations and innuendo from extremely suspect sources, is nothing more than a permit for prevarication, which the two governments foolishly handed rejectionist unionists and their fellow-travellers.
"Sinn Féin pointed out at the time that the legislation was going through Leinster House to give legal effect to this body that it would be used and abused by those who are hell-bent on frustrating the development of the peace process. This latest report has, as was the case with all the previous reports of this discredited body, unfortunately proved us right."Sinn Féin has put before the Dáil today a Bill which would repeal the legislation that brought the body in to being and which provided it with its substantial funding from the Irish taxpayer. I am calling on the Government to adopt this Bill and put it to the House so that the collection of spooks and anti-republican cranks that make up the IMC can be disbanded immediately. In the interests of the peace process and in the re-establishment of the institutions it is crucial that this happens sooner rather than later." ENDS