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Adams slams Government 1916 plans as “disrespectful and cynical”

19 November, 2014 - by Gerry Adams

Sinn Fein Leader Gerry Adams TD has slammed the lack of detail in Government plans to mark the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Rising which he said were deeply disrespectful to the men and women of 1916 and betray a cynical indifference to their ideals, hopes and vision.

Speaking in the Dáil today Gerry Adams said:

Taoiseach, it is very clear that your incompetent Government has no intention of fulfilling the vision of the 1916 Proclamation. Indeed, everything you do is marked contrast to this progressive, democratic declaration.

“You also have no intention of properly commemorating and celebrating the 1916 Rising. For three years you offered no plan, no proposals, no ideas and no vision of how the State should mark the hugely significant 100th anniversary of the Rising.

“Last week, under mounting pressure from the relatives of the 1916 Leaders and growing public concern, your Government produced a glossy brochure devoid of historical substance or details.

“Sinn Fein MinisterJennifer McCann and I attended the launch in the GPO. I found it ironic that the self-serving Ministerial speeches were drowned out by the noise of anti-water charge rebels who had besieged the GPO. 

“Taoiseach, can you explain to the Dáil why the video which launches ‘Ireland 2016’ makes no mention of the Easter Rising or of the signatories of the Proclamation?

“Instead, we are treated to images of Facebook, Google, Bob Geldof, Bono, David Cameron and the English Queen! Is this what the Government believes the 1916 Rising was about?”

Mr Adams asked the Taoiseach if he would agree that the Ireland 2016 video and the flimsy commemorative brochure “are deeply disrespectful to the men and women of 1916 and betray a cynical indifference to their ideals, hopes and vision”.

He said it is now clear that former Fine Gael Leader John Bruton has won the argument about how the Government should proceed on this important issue.

“In another deeply embarrassing development, it emerged that the Government used 'Google translate' on its 1916 website, with the result that the Proclamation was reduced to meaningless gibberish.

“I think that is symbolic of this Government's entire approach to the anniversary and more importantly perhaps to the Proclamation and the language. It seems you can’t do anything right but in this case your actions reflect your attitude.

“The reality is that the Government won’t mark the Rising appropriately because it is opposed to the political, social and economic intent of the 1916 Proclamation. Despite this shameful official neglect, ordinary Irish citizens, North and South, and the Irish Diaspora will celebrate and educate and pay tribute to the brave men and women of 1916.”

The Sinn Fein Leader mentioned the 1916 Relatives’ Association who said the Government is trampling on the men and women who fought in the Rising:

“Spokeswoman Una McNulty said ‘the Government doesn’t know what they’re doing, they’d years to plan for this but this is a shambles and was put together in a blind panic,’ ” added Mr. Adams.  

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