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Government commitments on TG4 must be upheld

13 September, 2004

North Antrim Sinn Féin MLA, Philip McGuigan has welcomed the fact that TG4 coverage is to be extended across the North. He made his comments after a meeting with the British and Irish Governments at Stormont as part of the Good Friday Agreement review process.

Mr McGuigan said:

"Five years on both governments have failed in their commitments and obligations to provide extensive coverage of TG4 across the North. I put this point to both governments during our meeting. I informed them that the coverage of RTÉ and TG4 in many parts of my own constituency, such as Ballycastle, The Glens and Dunloy, range from poor to non-existent. This is a completely unsatisfactory situation.

"I was informed that technical difficulties were holding up progress but that these were being overcome. It was hoped that this would be the case by early 2005.

"GAA enthusiasts in North Antrim should no longer be denied the opportunity to watch hurling, football and camogie on RTÉ and TG4, at both club and county level. There is an ongoing growth of interest in the Irish Language here in North Antrim and this is reflected in the widespread desire for TG4 to be made available throughout the constituency.

"Six years have passed since the signing of the Agreement and the governments have had ample time to fulfil these obligations. Nationalists have a legitimate right to access this cultural resource in the same way that English citizens have access to BBC. There can be no more delays and no more excuses - This issue must be addressed immediately. " ENDS

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