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2009 Ard Fheis Clár launched

19 February, 2009

Dublin MEP and incoming Vice President Mary Lou McDonald today  launched the 2009 Ard Fhéis Clár along with Economic Spokesperson Arthur Morgan TD in Dublin.

The Sinn Féin Ard Fheis 2009 is taking place this Friday and Saturday February 20th and 21st at the RDS in Dublin. The theme of this year’s Ard Fheis is, “A Vision For Ireland’s Future  -  Aisling do thodhchaí na hÉireann”.

Download a PDF of the 2009 Sinn Féin Ard Fheis Clár

Speaking at the launch Ms McDonald said:

“The government’s solution to the recession has been to cut and borrow with no serious plan on how it intends to rebuild the Irish economy on such a policy basis. We see with the recent revelations surrounding Anglo Irish Bank that the golden circle of the 1980s never really went away, they simply regrouped in the 1990s. This government may continue to protect them, Sinn Féin will not. It also worth noting that it is not Dáil debates or media reporting on Ireland’s flailing economy that is damaging our international reputation but the banana republic like leadership of Fianna Fáil.

“Sinn Féin is willing to show leadership, to be honest with people. We will promote innovative proposals that can deliver jobs through an export led economy and by building first class infrastructure. We want serious taxation reform where the wealthiest pay their fare share and our most vulnerable are protected. We can turn this economy around with courageous ideals.

“Now is the time for new ideas and real change. It is a time for new type of political leadership and a new vision for Ireland’s future. The economic challenges before us are huge but they can be over come with honest leadership and decisive action. The starting point must be stimulating the economy.

“It means putting in measures to encourage economic growth, including economic strategies which invest in jobs, in people and in public services. This will require significant new funding. In the south this will mean increasing state borrowing to fund capital projects and lowering consumption taxes to boost consumer spending. In the North it means pressing the British government for greater fiscal autonomy and the ability to raise taxes and manage our economy independent of the British Treasury restraints.

“We will eradicate waste and duplication in the public service. We will turn this economy around with courageous and well thought out ideas. Ireland has an opportunity not only to beat the recession but to come out the other side as a more fair and equal society. The challenge is before us, Sinn Féin is ready to grasp it.”

Note to Editor: Key note speeches will set out how Sinn Féin proposes to get Ireland back to work, its position on the Lisbon Treaty re-run, its plan for Irish Unity and tackling outstanding policing and truth matters in the north.

On Saturday a number of elected representatives will join the ICTU demonstration to express Sinn Féin’s solidarity with the march and Mandate General Secretary John Douglas will address the Sinn Féin gathering in the RDS during the afternoon session.

There will also be a number of proposed leadership changes to go before Ard Fhéis the most notable being Mary Lou McDonald as Vice President, she is uncontested.

Friday Night Key Notes 6:50pm: In coming Vice President and Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald will give a key note adddres. 7pm: Junior Minister Gerry Kelly will address issue of truth recovery 7:10pm Alex Maskey MLA will speak to the challenges facing policing in the north over the coming months. 8pm: Sinn Féin No to Lisbon Campaign Director and North West EU Candidate Pádraig Mac Lochlainn will give a key note speech on the Lisbon Treaty re-run.

Saturday Key Notes 11:20am: Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness key note address 12pm Economic Spokespersons Arthur Morgan TD and Mitchell McLaughlin will both give a key note on the economy north and south 5pm Gerry Adams MLA, MP Presidential address

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