Newry and Armagh Sinn Fein Assembly Election candidates revealed

January 23, 2017

At a selection convention  held in Ti Chullain on Tuesday last, Newry and Armagh Sinn Féin confirmed the selection of its three sitting MLAs Megan Fearon, Cathal Boylan and Conor Murphy to stand in the forthcoming assembly election on March 2nd.

The three selected candidates thanked those present for their ongoing support and urged all to get involved in the forthcoming crucial election campaign.

Megan Fearon said a vote for her and her Sinn Féin colleagues represented a vote for “Equality, Change, Respect, Unity and Leadership.”

“Sinn Féin have called time on the arrogance of the DUP and their behaviour in these institutions. We have done so because we can no longer accept how the public and these institutions have been treated with contempt,” added Ms Fearon.

“Whilst we in Sinn Féin and Martin McGuinness have stretched ourselves to the very limit to try and keep these institutions working, unfortunately the behaviour of the DUP, the actions of the British government and the inaction of the Irish government have let us all down.”

The Sinn Fein candidate said the upcoming election would give people the opportunity to “draw a line under the DUP’s arrogance and their contempt for the Irish language community and Irish identity, for our LGBT community, ethnic minorities and women.The political institutions have to deliver for all citizens on the basis of equality and respect and there can be no return to the status quo.”

Accepting his nomination, her colleague Cathal Boylan said the election was not about “Orange and Green” but was a chance to secure “new equalities.”

Mr Boylan said the public were “outraged by the incompetence and mishandling of the Renewable Heating Incentive scheme, the allegations of corruption and the potential loss of hundreds of millions of pounds to the public purse,” but he said the election “goes beyond simply being a referendum on the series of scandals involving the DUP including RHI, NAMA and Red Sky, disastrous as they have been to public confidence.”

“The British government has failed to honour its agreements on an Irish Language Act, on a Bill of Rights and on legacy and have allowed the DUP to block basic equality provisions for citizens in the north.The Irish government, a co-guarantor of the agreements have acted as a bystander and failed to hold the British government to account.”

Echoing the thanks of his colleagues for his nomination, Conor Murphy said Sinn Féin were “not prepared to confer legitimacy upon political institutions which are being undermined.”

“The process and principles of the Good Friday Agreement cannot be set to the side at the whim of the DUP,” he added

“Powersharing is based on equality, rights and respect and that cannot be corrupted, nor can those involved in government be associated with corruption.  These are basic and fundamental principles without which no Executive will be formed.”

Meanwhile, following the decision by Martin McGuinness to step down from his role as deputy first minister the party has revealed his successor will be announced later today (Monday).  Several names have been mooted as frontrunners for the position, one of whom is Newry and Armagh candidate Conor Murphy.