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"Fine Gael has demonstrated that racist remarks are okay with them" - Integration Centre

Darren Scully’s re-admission to the Fine Gael party has caused anger with one migrant support group.

Darren Scully during his time as mayor of Naas
Darren Scully during his time as mayor of Naas
Image: PA Wire/PA Archive/Press Association Images

TODAY’S DECISION TO reinstate the former mayor of Naas to the Fine Gael party has angered a migrant charity.

The Integration Centre CEO Killian Forde says that Councillor Darren Scully, who stepped down as mayor of Naas after declaring he wouldn’t take representations from black Africans, should not have been accepted back into the party fold.

Party General Secretary Tom Curran told KFM today that Scully had “paid the price” for his comments, but Forde says that the party has made a “strategic mistake”.

Fine Gael had a clear opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to anti-racism and diversity in their own organisation. With this decision they send a clear message that racist remarks by elected representatives are okay with them.

“The issue for TIC has little to do with Cllr Scully’s original remarks. He is free and entitled to his own prejudices and to express intolerance, as is his right. The electors can judge him for that.

However, Fine Gael has given a commitment to ensuring their party is not a home for people who express intolerance publicly.”

Forde added that while the party’s Justice Minister makes efforts to confer citizenship on a number of new Irish, the acceptance

“Minister Alan Shatter has done a fine job in conferring citizenship on tens of thousands of new Irish citizens. What sort of mixed message does this send from Fine Gael to these new Irish citizens?”

The party, however, claims that Scully has learned from his mistake.

“Councillor Scully caused deep hurt and offence in all sectors of society, and indeed within the Fine Gael Party.

“His remarks were entirely inappropriate and deeply offensive.

“The Party believes that Cllr Scully has learned from his mistake, and as a result the Party whip has been restored,” said a party statement.

Read: Racism row councillor re-admitted to Fine Gael

Read: Fine Gael investigating Mayor’s race comments

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