Now is the time to prepare for constitutional change - Mary Lou McDonald
Speaking at the AGM of the party’s Six County Cúige, Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald said now is the time to prepare for constitutional change, to prepare for a referendum on Irish Unity and for the people to have their say on their future.
Ms. McDonald said:
“The very practical, present-day challenges presented by both the pandemic and by Brexit have not only reshaped the discussion on Irish Unity, these crises have brought the prospect of a United Ireland into mainstream thinking. Conversations are happening in every corner of our island. In every town. In every village. In every city. North and South.
“The unification of Ireland is being spoken about as being achievable but also as being very necessary. This is because a united Ireland makes sense - economically, politically and socially.
“Sinn Féin's vision of Irish Unity is one of equality, inclusion and respect. A real home for everybody, from all backgrounds, identities and traditions.
“Others take a different perspective. They have a different view. My message is this - let's have the debate and the discussion with openness and with respect.
“We are not saying that a United Ireland will happen today or tomorrow. But we are saying that we must prepare for constitutional change. We must prepare for a referendum on Irish Unity, for the people to have their say. The political systems - North and South must prepare. Both governments must prepare.
“Let's talk about the future and prepare for the future - our future - together.”
The Sinn Féin leader also said that the commitments made a year ago in the New Decade New Approach agreement must be delivered.
“In the Executive our ministers have brought positive and progressive change into the heart of politics and are delivering for people every day despite the efforts of those who want to frustrate and block change.
"There is still work to do. Commitments that were entered into in the New Decade, New Approach agreement, including Acht Na Gaeilge must be honoured. There can be no more delays.”