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‘Department should not be backing anti-Irish, political decision’ - McCann

19 December, 2017 - by Fra McCann

The Department of Education should not be standing over an anti-Irish, politically-motivated decision by a DUP Minister which has already been thrown out by the courts, Sinn Féin MLA Fra McCann has said.

The West Belfast MLA was speaking as supporters of Gaelscoil an Lonnáin protested at the Department of Education’s decision to appeal a High Court ruling overturning a previous ministerial refusal to allow the school to move to a new site.

“In June 2016, then DUP Education Minister Peter Weir refused a proposal for the school to move from its current inadequate facilities on the Falls Road to new modern premises on the former St. Comgall’s site,” he commented.

“This community regarded that decision as politically motivated and an attack on the wider Irish language community in West Belfast. Therefore, it was no surprise to us when Peter Weir’s decision was subsequently overturned by the High Court.

“However, we are appalled that the Department is now intent on appealing the High Court ruling. They should not be standing over an anti-Irish, politically motivated-decision by a DUP Minister that has been quashed by the courts.

“Parents, pupils, activists and local representatives came together today to protest at the department’s headquarters and we will continue to oppose this shocking decision from departmental officials which will only serve to harm the children at Gaelscoil an Lonnáin.”

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