Denial of EU seats see’s Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil leave citizens in the North behind – Ó Donnghaile
Speaking after tonight’s Seanad debate on the allocation of two additional EU seats to Ireland, Sinn Féin Senator Niall Ó Donnghaile criticised both the Irish Government and their Fianna Fáil partners.
Speaking from Leinster House Seanadóir Ó Donnghaile said;
“Tonight’s Seanad vote is a disappointing one – despite firm commitments to ‘never again abandon’ people in the North, the Government deprived us of the most basic entitlement afforded to any citizen – the right to vote.
“When Britain leaves the EU, the first human right that will be denied to people in the north, Unionist and Nationalist, is the right to vote in an EU election; a right to have their voice heard in the EU by electing a parliamentary candidate.
“It is political cynicism of the highest order for Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael to, this morning, enter the Seanad and exalt the virtues of extending votes in Presidential Elections to the people in the North, but this evening, come in and oppose citizens there retaining their Irish/EU rights.
“Last year An Taoiseach told us he wanted to see a new panel that would effectively create a Six County constituency for the Seanad, he also said he believed in extending votes in Seanad elections to all citizens, yet tonight his colleagues in Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil deny us a vote in European elections.
“One day Fianna Fáil will profess a new found interest in the North but the next vote in favour of legislation denying us our democratic right to vote as Irish and EU citizens. I can’t help but wonder the view of their new SDLP colleagues is regarding tonight’s vote.”