Be Part of Building a New Republic

Latest Statements


Sinn Féin Education Minister Caitríona Ruane has approved a development proposal for Ballymoney Model Primary School to transform to controlled integrated status with effect from 1 September 2009.

Explaining the reasons for her decision Ms Ruane said:

"Each development proposal is carefully considered based upon all of the available information and taking account of the statutory duty to facilitate and encourage integrated education. Ballymoney Model Primary School, with the support of both the North-Eastern Education and Library Board (NEELB) and the Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education (NICIE), has undertaken a considerable amount of work in preparing this proposal and this is to be commended. The school had an enrolment last year of 296 pupils and is sustainable for the future. There is interest in integrated education in this area and I believe that this school should be given the opportunity to transform successfully to integrated status." ENDS

Notes to Editors

The North Eastern Education and Library Board (NEELB) published Development Proposal No 240 on 3 April 2008 proposing to transform Ballymoney Model Primary School to controlled integrated status with effect from 1 September 2009 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Approval is conditional upon the school fully implementing its Transformation Action Plan and to achieving the requisite minimum Year 1 intake of 10% from the minority religion, in this instance Catholic.

Ballymoney Model Primary School is a co-educational controlled primary school. The total 2007/08 enrolment was 296.


Sinn Féin Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Michelle Gildernew MP MLA and the Social Development Minister have announced funds totalling £2.4million through the Warm Homes Scheme, to provide a package of insulation measures and energy efficiency tailored to the needs of rural dwellings. This includes an increase of £400k to the Warm Homes budget to fund energy efficiency improvements for rural homes.

Around 630 rural homes will now get the insulation and heating improvements they urgently need.

Ms Gildernew said:

"This is a great boost for hundreds of people living in rural dwellings, especially in this climate of economic hardship.

"People living in these areas are often greatly disadvantaged when it comes to fuel. This is due to their distance from supplier, reliance on oil, and the fact that many rural homes tend to be old, solid walled and thus harder and more expensive to insulate.

"This agreement today means that these harder to heat homes can now benefit from the full range of energy efficiency grants available to them." ENDS

Note to Editors

As these homes are already on the waiting list to be surveyed and have the work carried out, it is anticipated that work on all 630 homes will be completed by March next year, providing much needed fuel efficiency to them all.


Sinn Féin Policing and Justice Spokesperson Alex Maskey has today commented on the report carried out by Dr Patricia Lundy for the University of Ulster into the Historical Enquiries Team (HET).

Mr Maskey said,

"Clearly many families of victims want to know the truth and many people have availed of this process and have received a degree of solace; it's fair to say also that many people have not, and are deeply concerned about the independence of this particular body.

Patricia Lundy's report highlights some very fundamental flaws and serious concerns with regard to the HET and Sinn Féin would share many of those views. I have raised many of these same concerns with senior members of the PSNI, including Hugh Orde.

As a party, Sinn Féin supports people's right to engage with the HET and absolutely accepts that some families have come away from the HET process with a degree of comfort.

However, unless addressed, the issues highlighted in this report will continue to act as a barrier to confidence building for the PSNI within the community.

Hugh Orde and the PSNI need to reflect on the findings contained in Dr Lundy's report as they simply will not go away."



Sinn Féin Enniskillen by-election candidate Debbie Coyle speaking on the eve of the poll has said that the people of Enniskillen deserve a local councillor who will be able to put their local needs first.

Debbie Coyle will vote tomorrow morning, Wednesday 17th September, at 11am at Enniskillen Model School.

Ms Coyle said:

"The by-election in the Enniskillen, Lisbellaw and Tempo areas will come down to a contest between Arlene Foster and myself.

"Canvass returns over the past week are telling us that this election contest really is neck and neck - a 'two horse race'. Every vote will count.

"There is a real opportunity for local people to use their vote to ensure that they get a local councillor who will be able to put their local needs first.

"I am confident that if we maximise the vote from nationalists and non-nationalists that together we can win the seat and return a local councillor who will work exclusively in Fermanagh council." ENDS


Responding to government plans to extend credit from the National Treasury Management Agency to the Housing Finance Agency on the basis that it give greater access to local authority loans for the lower paid Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Housing Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has called on the government to make a much more substantial intervention into what is for thousands of families across the state a housing crisis.

The Dublin TD said:

"Government efforts to increase the delivery of social and affordable housing are of course to be welcomed. However the current proposals by government must pass a number of key economic and social proofing stages before becoming government policy.

"Will the proposals make housing in real terms more affordable to low income families. What impact will the new arrangement have on the overall housing market? Will the measure artificially inflate house prices? Who will benefit, home buyers or developers?

"Central to any new government policy on housing must factor in increasing the delivery of social housing stock. Even with extended credit facilities offered to those on low incomes by the Housing Finance Agency for many families buying a home will still be beyond their financial reach. With 44,000 families throughout the state on the social housing list ignoring the needs of those most vulnerable makes no social or economic sense.

"Currently in Dublin there are approximately 10,000 empty private units, 4,500 thousand of these are two bedroom and 1,500 one bedroom units. Tally this with 2,015 homeless in the capital city, many of whom are in emergency accommodation and 80% are single men. One bedroom units have dropped considerably in price therefore making local authority purchase of such units an attractive option in the current economic climate.

"The delivery of new housing stock will be nearly half this year to what it was in 2007, therefore purchasing from the glut of existing housing stock at competitive costs to deliver housing to those most in need makes sense.

"Of course any new measures by government to acquire housing from the private market must deliver value for money to the tax payer. However if the purchase of existing units can immediately deliver on stream social housing units therefore taking families and the homeless out of rent supplemented and emergency accommodation then such options must be considered.

"To date government has taken an extremely hands off approach to the delivery of social and affordable housing. In the context of the current food, fuel and finance crisis it simply does not make sense for government to continue shirking its responsibility to families on low incomes who need support in purchasing their own home." ENDS


Sinn Féin Waterford Councillor David Cullinane has described the announcement of the closure of Cappoquin chickens "as a massive blow to West Waterford and East Cork and yet another example of the governments inability to innovatively tackle job losses particularly in regions outside of Dublin. Mr. Cullinane added that the “impact of this closure cannot be understated with far reaching consequences for the West Waterford area.” 


Speaking today David said:


"Today’s announcement of the closure of Cappoquin Chicken's is a massive blow to West Waterford and East Cork. My thoughts at this time are with those who have lost their jobs. The impact this closure will have on the entire West Waterford region cannot be understated. This is devastating for the workers and their families and for suppliers solely dependent on the plant. The Government must immediately act to provide assistance to those who have lost their jobs and create alternative employment in the area.


"In January of this year a delegation from the Oireachtas Trade Enterprise and Employment Committee of which Sinn Féin T.D. Arthur Morgan is a member concluded a two day visit to East Cork and Waterford. Arthur proposed and secured the agreement of the committee to take on this job of work. The objective was to assess what social, economic and infrastructural intervention was required of government for regional towns experiencing consistent job losses, primarily due to the decline in traditional employment sectors such as manufacturing. Supports also need to be put in place to develop and grow Ireland’s domestic export market.


"What is evident from the Oireachtas Committees report is the need for the government and its agencies to adopt a proactive and innovative approach to job creation, enterprise and employment.


"The report also highlighted a decline in the Irish poultry sector. It outlined a number of factors behind this analysis including the sharp increase in feed prices and Irish poultry's challenge in competing with Brazilian produce within the US market. There can be no doubt that like many small and medium size companies in Ireland energy and fuel costs are adding a significant burden to the poultry sectors operational costs. The issue of Country of Origin labelling must also be immediately addressed as it is creates an unfair playing field for Irish producers supplying the food industry.


“Government must act now to readdress the economic and social disadvantage of these areas. Throughout Ireland whole regions have been left behind. Government has not invested in the necessary infrastructure and service provision needed to build and promote a vibrant economy throughout the island.


"Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan cannot continue to sit on her hands waiting it appears for jobs to simply land on the laps of those whose prospects of secure employment are most bleak.


"Despite economic indicators forecasting a continuing decline in manufacturing government has not prepared for this eventuality. Many of the employees affected have no experience of working in other sectors so it is imperative that the government opens up training and educational opportunities. Upskilling and retraining must be part and parcel of the governments’ response to job losses." ENDS


Local ploughmen carry the best wishes of the Sinn Féin Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew MP, MLA in the National Ploughing Championships at Kilkenny next week.

Past World Champion David Gill, a brother of current World Champion Samuel Gill, Thomas Cochrane who was third at the recent World event in Austria, and County Tyrone ploughman Brian O'Neill will be among the 300 competitors at Ireland's premier event.

Minister Gildernew, who recently hosted a reception at Stormont for the NI Ploughing Association, said:

"I want to wish all our ploughmen the best of luck in the championships. We have seven World Ploughing Champions from the North which is an outstanding achievement and I hope this year's event in Kilkenny brings all the NIPA participants every success."

Promoting DARD plans for the National Ploughing Championships, the Minister also called on local diversified farm businesses to take advantage of the trade opportunities on offer at the event.

She said:

"The National Ploughing Championships is one of the highlights of the Irish farming calendar, and offers an ideal opportunity for agri-food businesses to demonstrate products and services to a wider audience. This year the Department will be facilitating a number of local diversified farming businesses including crafts, engineering, technology, services, tourism and food to help them promote their businesses in a new market.

"We will also be displaying a wide range of services and information on animal health as well as research and development. The new Rural Development Programme (RDP) will also form a major part of the DARD exhibition showing the range of measures the RDP has to offer.

"I want to encourage as many people as possible to attend and support our industry at the event. The National Ploughing Championships offers a wide range of new potential clients to our businesses. I urge them all to make the most of the opportunity to open new markets; after-all the organizers are hoping for in excess of 150,000 in attendance at the event.

"It gives me great pleasure to be in a position to assist our industry's participation at such a large national event and I hope the DARD exhibition site at the show will reap great rewards for all those agri-food businesses participating." ENDS

Notes to Editors

Last year there were over 900 trade exhibitors at the National Ploughing Championships which attracted crowds of over 160,000. This spectacular event boasts the largest mobile machinery exhibition in Europe combining upwards of 70 acres of trade exhibition with an extensive machinery demonstration area.

The 77th National Ploughing Championships will take place at Cuffesgrange, County Kilkenny from Tuesday 23 to Thursday 25 September.


Sinn Féin MLA for North Belfast, Carál Ni Chuilín has invited the local community to Sinn Féin's annual MacMillan Coffee Morning. The Coffee morning will take place in the Lansdowne Hotel on the Antrim Road in Belfast on the morning of Friday the 19th of September between 9 am and 12 noon.

Speaking today Ms Ní Chuilín said:

"This is the third year of Sinn Féin organising a MacMillan Coffee Morning to raise much needed funds for the MacMillan Cancer organisation. Each year the event has only gotten bigger and better and this year we believe it will be extremely well attended.

"Everyone, no doubt, will know somebody who has been affected by cancer and will now how debilitating it is for the sufferer and their family and friends. This is only one way of making a difference and is a worthwhile one at that.

"Macmillan Cancer Charity rely on donations for 99% of their income yet do fantastic work with people of all ages who suffer from cancer and offer a wide range of support services for their families.

"Both myself and the Junior Minister, Gerry Kelly will be there and we'd love everybody to show their support for what will be an extremely enjoyable morning where you can relax and have a chat with the many people who will be there in a comfortable and atmosphere."



Sinn Féin MLA for North Belfast Carál ní Chuilín has slammed last nights sectarian attacks on residents homes in Twadell Avenue.

Speaking today Ms ní Chuilín said:

"Last nights attacks on Twadell Avenue were nothing more than sectarian, utterly wrong and those responsible need to stop immediately.

"Residents on interfaces across North Belfast whether it be Twadell Avenue, Ardoyne, North Queen Street or Carrick Hill, live in constant fear of attack. Their homes are heavily fortified and their quality of life is greatly reduced. A large proportion of these residents are vulnerable people or are pensioners.

"A lot of work has been going on by community and elected representatives over the summer. Given the dramatic decrease in such attacks over the past years this work does pay dividends. However there will be those who are still intent on such actions. Community workers can do what they can, ultimately though what needs to happen is that the PSNI need to do their job. The need identify those responsible from CCTV footage and arrest them. So far they have failed to do so."


Sinn Féin MLA Paul Butler has called for a ban on loyalist parades in Stoneyford village. Paul Butler condemned as 'blatantly sectarian' the actions of loyalists in Stoneyford who have applied to the Parades Commission for parades in the village every Tuesday night. These parades are designed to heighten sectarian tensions in the village and are totally unacceptable; the Secretary of State should use his powers under the Public Processions Act and ban any future parades in the village.

Paul Butler said:

"Leading loyalist Mark Harbison, who is organising these parades, along with other bandsmen intimidated Catholics living in Stonebridge Meadows last week. Harbison and other bandsmen marched over fields to get as close as possible to houses in Stonebridge Meadows where they proceeded to intimidate Catholics. Residents who I spoke to felt very threatened and intimidated.

"The Commission has ruled that these parades are not allowed to enter the housing developments of the Beeches and Stonebridge Meadows, both scenes of loyalist intimidation of Catholics in recent years which has led to numerous Catholic families fleeing the village. The loyalist parade route was clearly laid out in the Parades Commission determination, which specified that it was to march from the Orange Hall to the War Memorial and that no music was allowed to be played"

Paul Butler continued:

"Mark Harbison and band members entered a field between the two housing developments (Stonebridge Meadows and The Beeches) and proceeded to march around the Stonebridge Meadows development. This development was the scene for sectarian attacks on Catholic homes over the last number of years when a Catholic family escaped death after an arson attack on their home and car. The actions of this loyalist band are purely sectarian and designed to intimidate the Catholics of Stoneyford. Shaun Woodward should now ban future parades by this band in the village."


Sinn Féin Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald has described government efforts to link the rejection of Lisbon to the downturn in the economy as a “low brow tactic that seeks simply to bully the Irish people into submission rather than actually engage with them on the issues.”


The Dublin MEP said:


“Yesterday’s effort by both the Taoiseach and Foreign Affairs Minister Micheál Martin to present the peoples rejection of the Lisbon Treaty as a factor in the current economic downturn clearly illustrates the terms on which the government intends to re run the Lisbon Treaty.


“It is clear at this early stage that the government intends to re shape the public debate on Lisbon. Having failed to secure a yes vote on the content of the Treaty they will now resort to reducing a second referendum proposition to ‘is Ireland in or out of Europe’.


“Following the Irish peoples rejection of the Lisbon Treaty we remain as we have always been at the heart of Europe. Sinn Féin has consistently argued that Ireland’s place is within Europe. But we have a responsibility to use this wisely and we must remain ambitious for we can achieve as an active and committed member state.  


“Brian Cowen and Micheál Martin’s statement to the Irish people that we are now left on the margins of Europe is a shameful and indeed deeply dishonest response to the genuine challenge for Ireland and Europe following the Irish people’s rejection of the Treaty. We can be now be very clear on what basis Fianna Fáil intend to tackle the public Lisbon debate over the coming months in advance of December’s Council of Ministers meeting. What will be interesting to see unfold is whether Fine Gael and Labour support the government in their bullying approach to securing a yes vote in any re run of the Lisbon Treaty.


“It also cannot go unmentioned that this government seems ready to blame anyone and everyone for the country’s current economic woes bar their own failure to manage the public purse and indeed grow the domestic market during the boom years. Brian Cowen has blamed global circumstances, Finance Minister Brian Lenihan has blamed the collapse of the building sector and now the government is blaming the Irish people’s rejection of the Lisbon Treaty.


“Whilst there is no doubt the global fuel, food and finance crises are factors in the challenges our economy now faces what sets us apart from our European partners is this government’s failed economic policies.


“They failed to take on the board warnings that the public purse was and continues to be over dependent on revenue generated from construction and consumption.


“By failing to recognise the implications of the likely contraction in the construction sector and also the widely forecasted rise in unemployment the government based Budget 2008 on unrealistic figures. It has also sat back over the last seven years and allowed economic growth be driven by domestic consumption rather than by exports.


“There are simple truths in all of this. Ireland is not at the margins of Europe. Lisbon has nothing to do with Ireland’s current economic challenges. Renegotiating a better deal for Ireland and the EU is a positive for the union’s future and Ireland’s place within it. Government’s attempts to reshape the debate over the coming months must be challenged by all political parties who respect and wish to uphold social democracy.” ENDS


Sinn Féin Justice Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, speaking after yet another shooting of a man in Clondalkin today, said high Garda visibility in areas suffering high levels of crime is crucial to tackling increased incidents of public shootings.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh urged the Minister for Justice to ensure that provisions for increased Garda patrols, particularly on foot and on bicycle, are included in the Garda Policing Plan for 2009.

He said, "Last night's shooting is just one of many recent shootings in West Dublin. It is quite clear that extra Garda resources are required for this part of the City.

"Shootings, stabbings and pipe-bomb attacks have become all too regular occurrences in many parts of the State, particularly in urban working class areas. Not surprisingly these are also areas that, when consulted, have complained of a lack of Garda presence in their areas and of particularly long waiting times for Gardaí when they are called.

"Sinn Féin, in its submission to the Garda Policing Plan for 2009, will be once again advocating increased Garda Patrols in areas suffering from high levels of crime. While recognising that provisions were made for extra patrols in this year's plan we were disappointed that these patrols were to be in cars and vans rather than on foot and on bicycles as communities had shown preference for.

"It is quite clear from the frequency and the very nature of the shootings taking place around the state that the criminals involved have no fear of being caught by the Gardaí. There simply isn't enough Gardaí in the communities involved to warrant concern on the part of the criminals involved. This must be tackled with more regular Garda patrols.

"The vast majority of people living in these areas are hard working law abiding people and have the right to feel safe in their homes and communities. The responsibility for the provision of that safety lies with the Gardaí." ENDS


Commenting on the possible demise of the Progressive Democrats which is to be addressed by their Parliamentary Party today, Sinn Féin Dáil leader Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said the PDs' future is irrelevant as their policies, especially in health, have been adopted by Fianna Fáil.

He said, "We may be witnessing the dying days of the Progressive Democrats and truly progressive people in Ireland will shed no tears over their demise. The reality is, however, that their right-wing outlook has dominated Government for over a decade and their negative influence has been beyond their elected numbers because they have represented the most privileged in Irish society.

"It is irrelevant whether the PDs continue as a party or not. Their key policies have been adopted by Fianna Fáil, including tax breaks for the most wealthy, rewards for property speculators and, above all, the privatisation of our health services.

"Health Minister Mary Harney has remained in that Department in order to complete the privatisation of our health services, including the notorious private hospital co-location scheme. This PD-originated plan was fully embraced by Fianna Fáil despite widespread opposition across the health services.

"With health cuts already hurting the most vulnerable in our society the likely prospect is that Minister Harney will remain in her Department no matter what happens to her party. She will be accountable to no party and to no electorate because she will not be standing for election again. She will be free to impose more health cuts on behalf of her Fianna Fáil colleagues without fear of losing her seat. And they will continue their pretence of distancing themselves from her actions and decisions." ENDS


Sinn Féin Education Committee member, Michelle O'Neill MLA will address a public meeting in St. Patrick's High School on Wednesday 24th September.

In an address to parents of pupils transferring to second level education as well as educationalists, trade unionists and interested members of the public, the Committee member will outline the vision for transforming the current education system based on equality for all children.

The meeting will hear Michelle O'Neill outline the reform package which aims to:

  • Abolish academic selection over a transitional period of three years;
  • Replace selection at 11 with informed election or choice about their educational pathways by students at age 14;
  • Move towards area-based planning of sustainable schools where students will be accepted on community; geographical and family criteria;
  • Expand the curriculum so students have more choice in subject selection (through the entitlement framework);
  • Embark on a school-improvement campaign centred on literacy and numeracy.

Speaking to local journalists this week in advance of the public meeting Michelle O'Neill said:

"I am very much looking forward to my visit to St. Patrick's High School. Since my party colleague and the Mid Ulster MP, Martin McGuinness first announced the end of the 11-Plus transfer test in 2002 in his capacity as Education Minister, we have been building on the work he began and I am pleased to have an opportunity to outline the vision for transforming the education system to the people of East Derry." ENDS


Sinn Féin West Tyrone MLA Barry McElduff has welcomed the launch of an all-party Assembly committee focusing on rural issues. The all-party group will work closely with the Rural Community Network to address rural issues at the very heart of the Assembly.

The first meeting of the new all-party Rural Sustainability Committee will be today, Tuesday 16th September, at 12.30 at the Assembly.

Mr McElduff said,

"The formation of this all-party committee will be welcomed by rural communities across the north; this committee should be about striking the balance between rural issues and rural communities representation at the heart of the Assembly.

"It will focus on addressing issues such as rural identity, infrastructure, poverty and connectivity; issues which effect people throughout rural Ireland. The committee will focus on rural development and protection.

"I look forward to working with the committee to address rural issues in the Assembly in the time ahead." CRÍOCH


Sinn Féin Assembly member for Foyle Raymond McCartney today said the leadership of SDLP leader Mark Durkan was 'descending into farce'. Mr McCartney's remarks come after Mr Durkan this morning claimed on a radio programme 'that the DUP are wrong - but it is Sinn Féin's fault'.

Mr McCartney said:

"This morning Mark Durkan's analysis of the current political situation descended to new low levels. He declared 'that the DUP are wrong but it is Sinn Féin's fault'. These comments are the latest symptom of an increasingly out of touch SDLP leader.

"Last week for reasons best known to himself he was supporting a return to unionist majority rule. Today he is putting narrow party political interest ahead of the need to keep the pressure on the both the DUP and the British government who remain in default of the St. Andrews Agreement in relation to the transfer of powers on policing and justice.

"Mr Durkan has overseen the SDLP move from nominal support for a united Ireland, through its post nationalist phase and now onto its unionist majority rule position. In the eyes of the vast majority of nationalists and republicans his commentary has become little more than farcical." ENDS


Sinn Féin Education Minister Caitríona Ruane has today approved a development proposal for Cliftonville Primary School to transform to controlled integrated status.

Explaining the reasons for her decision Ms Ruane said:

"I believe that Cliftonville Primary School is well placed to achieve successful transformation. In 2007/08 over 10% of the school's enrolment was from the minority religion which provides the school with an excellent base on which to build. There is no alternative integrated primary provision within a reasonable distance of this area and parents have indicated their support for controlled integrated status. I wish the school well for the future." ENDS

Notes to Editors

The Belfast Education and Library Board (BELB) published Development Proposal No 188 on 15 May 2008 proposing to transform Cliftonville Primary School to controlled integrated status with effect from 31 August 2008 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Cliftonville Primary School is a co-educational controlled primary school. The total 2007/08 enrolment was 145.


The Second Stage of new legislation on animal diseases has today been agreed by the assembly and is on schedule to become law by Spring 2009.

The bill will enable stricter enforcement checks at ports, compulsory biosecurity measures at all livestock premises and contingency measures to swiftly contain and eradicate disease outbreaks. On-farm isolation facilities for diseased, suspected or imported animals will be compulsory and a fixed penalty system will apply to certain animal health offences.

Speaking after today's debate, Sinn Féin Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew MP, MLA said:

"We are all aware of the threat to our livestock industry from diseases such as Foot and Mouth, Avian Flu and Bluetongue disease. Thankfully, by working in close co-operation with colleagues in the South, Britain and Brussels we have been able to avoid the devastating consequences of an outbreak of the diseases here in recent times. But we cannot be complacent. There is a lot more we can do to protect our industry and to deal with those diseases such as Bovine TB and Brucellosis which continue to impose significant and ongoing costs on both Government and industry."

Outlining the background to the bill, the minister continued:

"Our current Diseases of Animals Order dates back to 1981 and while it has served its purpose reasonably well, there are a number of areas where the measures available to prevent and control disease are inadequate. I am thinking specifically of areas such as emergency vaccination, regulation of imports and exports, on farm biosecurity standards and effective enforcement controls. The bill will address these matters and will enable the introduction of policies reflecting the latest developments in research and technology to trace and combat disease."

"I firmly believe that this bill will have a positive impact on the reputation of our agri food industry. It will enable swift and decisive action to be taken to deal with a disease outbreak, improve animal health standards generally and, perhaps most importantly, it recognises and offers additional protection for the many law abiding farmers who maintain high animal health standards on their farms and who do so much to enhance the reputation of our livestock industry at home and abroad." ENDS

Notes to Editors

The Diseases of Animals Bill will now be referred to the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee who will carry out a detailed investigation into the detail of the bill and report back to the assembly.

The Diseases of Animals Bill and an Explanatory and Financial Memorandum are available on the Assembly website at:


Sinn Féin MP for West Tyrone Pat Doherty has once again called for an independent all Ireland inquiry to be put in place to investigate the circumstances leading up to the Omagh bomb and the subsequent investigation. Mr Doherty's remarks come after BBC Panorama revelations that the British listening centre GCHQ was monitoring the phones of those involved.

Mr Doherty said:

"Since the time of the devastating attack in Omagh we have repeatedly raised questions concerning the involvement of British Security Agencies in the events leading up to the bomb and in the subsequent investigation.

"Panorama has now revealed that GCHQ were listening in to the mobile phones of those involved in this attack as they transported the bomb to Omagh.

"Given these revelations and other information already in the public domain the case for a fully independent all Ireland inquiry into the events leading up to the bomb and the subsequent investigation is compelling." ENDS


Sinn Féin West Tyrone MLA Barry McElduff has welcomed the launch of an all-party Assembly committee focusing on rural issues. The all-party group will work closely with the Rural Community Network to address rural issues at the very heart of the Assembly.

Mr McElduff said,

"The formation of this all-party committee will be welcomed by rural communities across the north; this committee should be about striking the balance between rural issues and rural communities representation at the heart of the Assembly.

It will focus on addressing issues such as rural identity, infrastructure, poverty and connectivity; issues which effect people throughout rural Ireland. The committee will focus on rural development and protection.

I look forward to working with the committee to address rural issues in the Assembly in the time ahead."


Connect with Sinn Féin

An Phoblacht Ad


Mary Lou McDonald & Brian Stanley


Hunger Strike March & Rally, Dundalk 2015

Like us on Facebook

Sinn Féin Shop