The annual Sinn Fein conference began in Derry in the midst of the Westminster General Election campaign and our Bambos Charalambous managing director of Parikiaki newspaper was there representing our community.
Taking place at the Millennium Forum,  saw  the bulk of  Derry representatives take to the stage to address Sinn Fein members from across Ireland including outgoing Foyle MP Elisha McCallion speaking to the party faithful in her native city.
The battle for the Foyle seat at Westminster will undoubtedly prove one of the most keenly watched battles in next month’s electoral contest.
Another point of intrigue this weekend will be the head-to-head contest between Michelle O’Neill and challenger John O’Dowd for the position of Sinn Fein vice-president and de facto leader of the party in the North.

Sinn Fein is the oldest political movement in Ireland. It takes its name from the Irish Gaelic expression for “We Ourselves”. Since being founded in 1905, Irish Republicans have worked for the right of Irish people as a whole to attain national self-determination.

The movement founded almost 100 years ago by Arthur Griffith evolved into a number of organisations which carried the name.

Provisional Sinn Fein

The party once led by Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness, now by Mary Lou McDonald, is the largest of the modern parties which emerged from Sinn Féin. It says it seeks the establishment of a new Ireland based on sustainable social and economic development; genuine democracy, participation, equality and justice at all levels of the economy and society; and a lasting and meaningful peace with unity of purpose and action.

Sinn Féin is an Irish Republican party. Its objective is to end British rule in Ireland. It seeks national self-determination, the unity and independence of Ireland as a sovereign state.

The agenda for the Ard Fheis was launched in Dublin yesterday morning by Donegal TD Pearse Doherty said he looked forward to welcoming delegates and members to the North West.
“This Ard Fheis comes at a critical time for our country. We are on a countdown to a general election in the 26 Counties, with four by-elections also happening on 29th November, as well as a Westminster election taking place in December; with Brexit looming shortly afterwards. “The motions on the clár for the 2019 Ard Fheis reflect all of this. We will discuss and deliberate 166 motions across all policy areas and lay out solutions to the critical issues facing citizens across the island.

“These include planning for Irish reunification, the need to deliver a large-scale public housing programme and a range of measures to improve the financial situation of workers and families, from reducing sky-high rents and ending the insurance rip-off to major proposals in respect of reducing the cost of childcare“

There will be a number of emergency motions in relation to Brexit and the Ard Fheis will also be addressed by the president of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, Gerry Murphy, as well as by representatives from Cyprus, Palestine, Cuba and the ANC.

“More than 2,000 Sinn Féin members have registered to attend over the course of the weekend and Mary Lou McDonald will deliver her Presidential address at 8.30pm on Saturday evening. “The Ard Fheis comes at a time when the debate surrounding Irish unity is centre stage and, as the only party seriously committed to Irish reunification, planning for unity will feature prominently over the course of the weekend.

There was a fringe meeting on Saturday that  discussed the economic merits of a United Ireland with Professor of Economic Research at the ESRI, Seamus McGuinness, and we will publish a paper that outlines the facts surrounding the British subvention to the North and challenges some of the myths that are regularly peddled in that regard,” he added.

There is presidential address from Mary Lou McDonald is scheduled for 8.30pm on Saturday evening and will be prefaced by an introduction from Elisha McCallion.

Leave a Reply