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Kearney welcomes bonfire court ruling

8 December, 2015

Sinn Féin’s Declan Kearney has welcomed today’s court ruling on offensive material on the Ballycraigy bonfire.

Speaking today Mr Kearney said:

“The ruling today is the right one.

“For several years now Sinn Féin and others have been highlighting the offensive material burnt on 11th night bonfires including effigies, racist and sectarian slogans and stolen election posters.

“It is clear this is not an isolated case and this ruling sets a legal precedent which will have much wider significance.

“It has been pointed out on many occasions that other bonfires, in receipt of funding from some councils, contain similar offensive material which the court has now ruled as unacceptable.

“All such funding must now be examined in relation to this ruling. There is a duty on every council and the PSNI to ensure that bonfires do not in future have offensive material placed upon them.” 

“All statutory bodies including the PSNI must take account of this welcome ruling which demonstrates there should be zero tolerance for any form of sectarian or racist hate crime.

“The Ballycraigy bonfire is  a sectarian obscenity, and has become a byword for hatred and intolerance in the Antrim area, and across the north. 

"Sectarianism, racism, and any form of bigotry has nothing to offer our society.

“This court ruling should reinforce the resolve of our community to stand together in opposing hate and division, and to work for a society based upon mutual respect, parity of esteem and equality."

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