Voting rights must be extended to all Irish citizens – Ó Donnghaile
Speaking in the Seanad this morning Senator Niall Ó Donnghaile has welcomed news from Minister Joe McHugh that there is to be a referendum on Presidential Voting Rights for the diaspora but said that it must also be extended to Irish citizens in the North as soon as possible.
Speaking from the Oireachtas this afternoon Seanadóir Ó Donnghaile said;
“Minister McHugh’s recent announcement is a positive one, it is only right that we further enfranchise our Irish citizens overseas and that we work to ensure they retain a tangible link with politics and developments at home.
“The Minister has indicated that his stance would be put to referendum next year – that puts a clear onus on the government acting to ensure that citizens in the North are also included in this decision as a matter of urgency.
“This core right must also be extended however to Irish citizens who are living in every part of Ireland.
“There is widespread support for this move, not least from the Constitutional Convention. The Office of Uachtarán is a hugely symbolic one and it defies logic that someone from the North can become Uachtarán but not be entitled to vote for themselves.
“If the Government are serious, as co-guarantors, about realising the values and aspirations of the Good Friday Agreement then this is something they must live up to delivering.”