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Fís agus tacaíochtaí ag teastáil do Ghaillimh mar phríomhchathair dhátheangach agus ealaíon d’Éireann - Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD & Mairéad Farrell TD

10 March, 2022 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, Mairéad Farrell TD


Chuir urlabhraí Gaeilge, Gaeltachta, Ealaíon agus Cultúir Shinn Féin, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, in iúl gur gá fís agus tacaíochtaí cuí chun deis a thabhairt do Ghaillimh bláthú de réir an cáil atá air agus barr a chumas a bhaint amach mar phríomhchathair dhátheangach agus cultúir d’Éireann.

Bhí an Cathaoirleach ar Chomhchoiste Oireachtais na Gaeilge, na Gaeltachta agus Phobail Labhartha na Gaeilge ag labhairt tar éis dó cuairt dá-lá a thabhairt ar Ghaillimh an tseachtain seo caite le linn Seachtain na Gaeilge, áit a chas sé le grúpaí atá bainteach le saol Gaeilge agus ealaíon na cathrach, lena n-áirítear Gaillimh le Gaeilge, Fíbín sa Taibhdhearc, amharclann náisiúnta na Gaeilge, grúpaí éagsúla in OÉ Gaillimh ar nós Uachtarán agus Oifigeach Gaeilge na hOllscoile, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, Scoil an Bhéarla agus na nEalaíon Cruthaitheacha ag Ionad Mac Dhonnchadh, agus Comhaltas na Mac Léinn, Conradh na Gaeilge, Ionad Ealaíon na Gaillimhe, Ionad na nEalaíon Cruthaitheacha & Meán ag Institiúd Teicneolaíochta na Gaillimhe-Mhaigh Eo (GMIT), Ionad Scannánaíochta na Gaillimh, agus ionadaí ar son Coiste Pleanála Teanga Gaeltachta an Bhruaigh Thoir.

Agus é i nGaillimh, bhuail an turlabhraí de chuid Shinn Féin freisin le gníomhairí poblachtánacha óga de chuid Ógra Shinn Féin agus d’fhreastal sé ar sheoladh an leabhar mór le rá Pluid le Eoghan Mac Cormaic faoin saol sna blocanna H agus ‘ar an phluid’. Sheol Teachta Dála Shinn Féin do Ghaillimh Thiar, Mairéad Farrell, an leabhar, agus ghlac sí páirt i roinnt de na cruinnithe leis an Teachta Ó Snodaigh.

Dúirt an Teachta Ó Snodaigh:

“Ba mhór an spreagadh dom é cruinniú agus dul i gcomhairle leis na grúpaí sin atá bainteach le cur chun cinn na nealaíon agus na Gaeilge i gcathair na Gaillimhe, toisc an paisean agus an cruthaitheacht a bhí le sonrú, ach bhí ábhar macnamh ann freisin ó thaobh polasaí cultúir de.

“Ní réitíonn an cáil atá ar Ghaillimh mar phríomhchathair cultúir leis an háiseanna agus na tacaíochtaí atá ann d’ealaíontóirí, agus is mór an náire é nach bhfuil ach 3% den phobal inár aon cathair dhátheangach amháin ag labhairt Gaeilge go laethúil, in ainneoin go bhfuil leath d’achar na cathrach faoi scáth na Gaeltachta agus go bhfuil obair na gcapall ar bhun ag a leithéidí Gaillimh le Gaeilge, Conradh agus gníomhairí pleanála teanga deonacha chun an Ghaeilge a thabhairt chun tosaigh arís.

“Mar urlabhraí Gaeilge, Gaeltachta, Ealaíon, agus Cultúir, ba deis éisteachta i ndáiríre a bhí sa turas seo chun foghlaim ó na saineolaithe ar an talamh, agus tá súil agam cuairt a thabhairt ar cheantair Gaeltachta agus pobail ealaíon eile chun a nioncuir a fháil a bheidh mar bhunús le polasaí cuimsitheach ealaíon agus athbheochana teanga gur féidir le Sinn Féin cur i ngníomh sa rialtas.”

Chuir Mairéad Farrell TD leis an méid a dúirt sé:

“Caithfidh gurb é Gaillimh an taon príomhchathair cultúir sa stair nach raibh ceoláras aige, gan trácht ar ár nionad ealaíon atá brúite isteach i bhfoirgneamh atá ag titim as a chéile sa méid is a bhfuil seomraí dúnta, ní féidir ceardlainn a reachtáil, agus níl rochtain ann do saoránaigh faoi mhíchumas.

“Toisc drochbhainistíocht agus tionchar na paindéime, bhí deis caillte le Gaillimh 2020, ach níl aon bac orainn an deis a thapadh anois leis an athoscailt beocht a chur athuair i saol chultúir na cathrach agus í a fhorbairt mar cheannaire domhanda don chultúr agus don dearadh, agus ag cumhachtú ealaíontóirí.

“Ní mór dúinn gníomhú go gasta freisin chun a chinntiú nach bhfágtar Gaillimh taobh thiar cathracha eile in Éireann, ag féachaint ar an éacht bainte amach le ceathrú Gaeltachta timpeall Cultúrlann Bhéal Feirste agus na pleananna uailmhianacha do Bhaile Átha Cliath le Gaeilge, go háirithe toisc go bhfuilimear suite ag doras na Gaeltachta is mó sa tír agus tá deis ar leith againn an tairbhe eacnamaíochta, sóisialta agus cultúir a ghabhann le bheith mar shealbhóir ar cheann de na teangacha is ársa labhartha ar domhain.

“Gabhaim buíochas leis na grúpaí go léir a ghlac am saor óna sceidil gnóthacha chun bualadh le Teachta Ó Snodaigh agus liom féin, agus geallaim dóibh go ndéanfaidh muid gníomhú de réir an méid a dúirt siad linn chun plean cuimsitheach a chothú gur féidir le Sinn Féin cur i ngníomh a dhéanfaidh difear ollmhór do Ghaillimh do na glúnta amach romhain.”

Vision and supports needed for Galway as a bilingual and cultural capital for Ireland - Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD & Mairéad Farrell TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Gaeilge, Gaeltacht, Arts and Culture, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, highlighted the need for vision and appropriate supports to allow Galway to live up to its reputation and unleash its true potential as a bilingual and cultural capital for Ireland.

The Chair of the Joint Oireachtas Committee for the Irish language, Gaeltacht and Irish-speaking Community was speaking following a two-day visit to Galway last week during Seachtain na Gaeilge where he held meetings with groups involved in the Irish language and artistic life of the city, including Gaillimh le Gaeilge, Fíbín sa Taibhdhearc, Ireland’s National Irish-language Theatre, several groups at NUI Galway including the University President and Irish language Officer, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, the School of English & Creative Arts at the O’Donoghue Centre, and the Students’ Union, Conradh na Gaeilge, the Galway Arts Centre, the Centre for Creative Arts & Media at Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT), the Galway Film Centre, and a representative of the Bruach Thoir Gaeltacht Language Planning Committee.

While in Galway, the Sinn Féin spokesperson also met with young republican activists from Ógra Shinn Féin and attended the launch of Eoghan Mac Cormaic’s award-winning book on life in the H Blocks and on the blanket protests, Pluid. Mairéad Farrell, Sinn Féin’s TD for Galway West, launched the book and accompanied Teachta Ó Snodaigh at several of his meetings.

Teachta Ó Snodaigh said:

“Meeting and engaging with the groups involved in furthering the arts and the Irish language in Galway City was invigorating, given the passion and creativity on display, but it also provided food for thought in terms of cultural policy.

“The reputation of Galway as a cultural capital is not matched by facilities and supports for artists, and it is a crying shame that our only bilingual city has no more than 3% of the population speaking Irish on a daily basis, despite around half of the city’s area coming within the Gaeltacht, and in spite of the trojan work underway by groups like Gaillimh le Gaeilge, Conradh and voluntary language planning activists to bring Irish to the fore once more.

“As Gaeilge, Gaeltacht, Arts and Culture spokesperson, I mainly took this trip as an opportunity to listen to the experts on the ground and hope to visit other Gaeltacht and arts communities seeking their input as a basis upon which to build a comprehensive policy for the arts and for the revival of the Irish language that Sinn Féin can implement in government.”

Galway West TD Mairéad Farrell added:

“Galway City must be the only capital of culture in history not to have a concert hall, not to speak of our arts centre being reduced to a building which is in such a state of disrepair that whole rooms are out of use, workshops cannot be held, and citizens with disabilities are deprived of access.

“Galway 2020, as a result of poor management and the impact of the pandemic, was a missed opportunity, but that doesn’t stop us seizing the opportunity of reopening to breathe new life into our cultural life by making our city a world leader in terms of culture and design, and empowering our artists to succeed.

“We also need to act fast to ensure Galway does not fall behind other cities in Ireland, looking at the success of the Gaeltacht quarter centred on Belfast’s Cultúrlann and the ambitious plans for Baile Átha Cliath le Gaeilge, as we are uniquely positioned at the gateway to the country’s largest Gaeltacht to make the most of the economic, social and cultural potential that comes with playing host to one of the oldest vernacular language traditions on Earth.

“I’d like to thank all the groups who took time out of their busy work to meet with Teachta Ó Snodaigh and myself, and assure them that we will follow up on what they have said is needed in the hope of building a comprehensive plan that Sinn Féin could implement to transform Galway for generations.“

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