Time for McDonald to break silence on McElduff

08 January 2018

Labour Party Leader and spokesperson on Northern Ireland, Brendan Howlin TD, has called on the Sinn Féin leader in waiting, Mary Lou McDonald to break her silence on the video posted by West Tyrone MP Barry McElduff.

Deputy Howlin said:

“The video by Sinn Féin MP Barry McElduff provided a glimpse into the mindset of the party, referencing one of the most sectarian acts from the Troubles. That it was then retweeted by one of SF’s most senior politicians, their former Northern Ireland Finance Minister Máirtín Ó Muilleoir illustrates further the issues at stake.

“If the slogan of ‘Equality, Respect, Integrity’ is to have any meaning, it is now time for the leader in waiting, Mary Lou McDonald to break her silence on her views of the video and what action she will take.

“The Sinn Féin National Chair has called the action ‘inexcusable and indefensible’. It is now time for Deputy McDonald to make her own views known.

“Mr McElduff’s assertions that he didn’t know what he was doing are simply not credible. Instead, these implausible denials compound his original offence in which Mr McElduff mocks one of the most appalling atrocities of the Troubles in which individual workmen were singled out for murder on the basis of their religious identity.

“The suggestion that Mr McElduff is happy to meet with the relatives of the Kingsmill victims is a tried and tested Sinn Fein crisis management practice when one of its representatives lets the mask slip.

“We will hear much in the next months about the changes in Sinn Fein. Now though is a chance for Mary Lou McDonald, the heir presumptive to the leadership in the Republic and Michelle O’Neill leader in the North, to make a clean break with past apologias.”

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