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Dublin: 9 °C Monday 22 April, 2019
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Gerry Adams: 'We are not Fine Gael or Labour. We are proud of the men and women of 1916'

Gerry Adams was re-elected as the party leader at this year’s Ard Fheis.

Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

GERRY ADAMS told the delegates at this year’s Sinn Fein’s Ard Fheis that the Proclamation was not meant to be read every 100 years, it was meant to be lived.

“No republic worthy of its name would tolerate partition, mass emigration, poverty and homelessness.”

He said that when in government, Sinn Féin will deliver this change.

In a modern Ireland awash with stress, mental health issues and suicide we are committed to shaping a society where – as Pearse put it – ‘the end of freedom is human happiness.’

Moore Street monument 

In his presidential address at the party’s Ard Fheis in Dublin, Adams told delegates:

It is an absolute disgrace that in this centenary year the relatives of the 1916 leaders were forced to take the government to the High Court to save the National Monument at Moore Street.This Fine Gael and Labour government wanted to demolish it. They backed the property developer. They wanted to demolish the national monument.

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He said the families of those that died, who were present in the Covention Centre tonight, fought to protect “our national heritage”.

We are not Fine Gael or Labour. We are proud of the men and women of 1916. We are not Fianna Fáil. We are equally proud of the men and women of the H Blocks and Armagh and of the 1981 hunger strikers and of the patriot dead from our time. We remember them here tonight.

Attack on Fianna Fail

Adams also followed Mary Lou McDonald’s earlier speech, launching an attack on Fianna Fail.

In nasty little soundbites, which would make the DUP blush, the Fianna Fáil leader in particular, proclaimed that this party, that the people in this Convention Centre, and more importantly those citizens who vote for Sinn Féin, are not fit for government.

Adams also said he would not put Enda Kenny back into government.

But putting Fine Gael back into power is exactly what he is doing. That’s not in the national interest.

He said Fianna Fáil voters did not vote to give Fine Gael another term, stating that Micheál Martin would prefer to put Fine Gael back in government as part of his effort to counter the growth of Sinn Féin.

So, I have a message for Teachta Martin. You promised in your manifesto to abolish Irish Water and to scrap water charges.Water charges must go. Irish water must go.

In closing, speaking to the full to capacity auditorium, he recalled the words of Luke Kelly.

To whom do we owe our allegiance today
To whom do we owe our allegiance today
To those brave men and women who fought and died that Róisín live again with pride?
Or the faceless men who for Mark and Dollar,
Betray her to the highest bidder,
To whom do we owe our allegiance today

Follow @christinafinn8 and @TJ_Politics for updates  from the Sinn Féin Ard Fheis at Dublin’s Convention Centre this weekend.    

Read: Sinn Féin to overhaul party’s disciplinary rules>

Read: McGuinness says criminalisation of woman who took abortion drugs was ‘absolutely wrong’>

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