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Sinn Féin supports calls for a government review into the health impacts of 5G rollout

Sinn Féin says it is open to talks with Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil after the next general election.

Pearse Doherty said Sinn Fein is willing to enter into government formation talks with Fine Gael and Fianna Fail.
Pearse Doherty said Sinn Fein is willing to enter into government formation talks with Fine Gael and Fianna Fail.
Image: Leah Farrell

A FULL GOVERNMENT review to establish the “independent facts” about the possible health impact of 5G rollout should take place, according to Sinn Féin. 

Launching its programme for the party’s Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Derry this weekend, Donegal TD Pearse Doherty said the Ard Comhairle will be supporting a motion calling for the health and environmental concerns relating to 5G to be reviewed.

5G is the next step up from the 4G and 3G services offered through mobile phones. It is capable of much faster download and upload speeds. Vodafone was the first network to offer it to customers earlier this year, but many other mobile phone networks are now following suit.

A number of communities have voiced concerns about the arrival of 5G in Ireland, in particular the radiation levels it emits, the impact of mobile masts and associated infrastructure, and the radio waves impact on humans.

5G concerns 

Councillors in Clare, Leitrim, Sligo and Wicklow have passed motions raising objections to 5G on health grounds, while protests have been held in towns such as Dingle in Kerry.

In light of the pushback, it was reported recently that Ibec chief executive Danny McCoy wrote to Ministers Richard Bruton and Eoghan Murphy stating that it would be a disaster for businesses if 5G was blocked in any way.

Speaking about the motion ahead of the Ard Fheis this weekend, Doherty said the Ard Comhairle of the party met on Saturday and discussed all the motions, including the ones on 5G, and decided to support the motion which calls for a full, independent review into the effects of 5G.

The motion also calls for the government to provide health warnings where applicable to citizens on such technologies.

The program for the Ard Fheis this weekend includes other motions on issues such as parking charges at hospitals, calling for fees to be scrapped. Another motion tackles the issue of the decriminalisation of drugs, calling for Ireland to follow the Portugese model.

Banning flags

A motion also calls on the Ard Fheis to “prohibit the display of paramilitary flags and banners, secure their immediate removal and prosecute those guilty of erecting them”. This is to include displays of other intimidatory flags and banners.

MP for Fermanagh/Tyrone Michelle Gildernew told reporters that during the summer hundreds of flags are seen hanging in towns across the North. She said that any flag that is hung up should only be done so for a limited time, and should then be removed.

She said that such flags are used by people who are “marking” their territory, and “needs to end”. 

On the issue of whether Sinn Féin would be open to entering into government with either Fine Gael or Fianna Fail, Doherty said they would be willing to discuss forming a government with either party.

Doherty said the party is willing to speak to either of the main parties, and a broader left coalition, in order to form a more progressive government.

“The current position goes back to last year’s Ard Fheis, which is Sinn Fein will only enter a coalition if we can secure an appropriate programme for government that delivers on our major issues,” Doherty said today.

“We need to see proper investment in housing, a solution to the perpetual crisis in health, a focus in relation to public finances, moves in preparation for Irish unity.

“But the position is, it would be up to the delegates of Sinn Fein, if we were satisfied we could secure that with any other coalition party, then we would go back to them.

“We’re open to it, if those parties are wiling to come on board, with a proper progressive policy platform.

“Now, that would be a big step for them to take, given we have these two conservative parties that have been in government for the last three years that have made the health and housing crisis worse, and widened the gap between income earners.

“Whether they’re willing to move on that would remain to be seen, but our position allows us to enter in those discussions,” he said.

Both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have ruled out entering into government with Sinn Féin.

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