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Dublin: 16°C Monday 8 August 2022

Lucinda denies Yes Kilkenny page was a 'front' for Renua

The party’s leader has dismissed any wrongdoing.

Lucinda Creighton
Lucinda Creighton
Image: Photocall Ireland

Updated: 16.22

LUCINDA CREIGHTON HAS said, as far as she is aware, no member of Renua Ireland was involved in the controversial Yes Kilkenny Facebook page.

On Monday, reported that the pro-same sex marriage group Yes Kilkenny – which is separate to Yes Equality Kilkenny, the local branch of the national campaign – denied it was a ‘front’ for Renua’s Carlow-Kilkenny by-election candidate, Patrick McKee.

The group, which presented itself as “non-party” and a “cross-community campaign to secure a Yes vote,” during the lead-up to the same-sex marriage referendum, issued a controversial endorsement of McKee last week.

It later emerged the campaign was run by figures within Renua, including McKee’s campaign manager Adrian Shanahan and local party activist John Eardly.

Renua’s Ethics Officer Karl Deeter is looking into the issue.

This afternoon Renua activist John Eardly released a statement, saying Shanahan was not involved in the decision to post the endorsement.

He wrote:

In recent days, there has been some discussion of a post I placed on the Yes Kilkenny FB Page on the 21st May 2015.This was a decision I took as an administrator of the Yes Kilkenny FB Page.I take full responsibility for this decision. In doing so, I wish to confirm that my colleague on the Yes Kilkenny FB Page, Adrian Shanahan, was NOT involved in the decision to post the piece. The decision was made by me and me alone. Cllr Patrick McKee was not aware of this decision at any time either.

I wish to state that my decision was based on good faith at all times. I decided to post the piece supporting Patrick McKee in the by-election because it was my deeply held view that it would be good for the LGBT community in Kilkenny. Nonetheless, I apologize for any hurt or upset caused to anyone who was offended by my Piece.

Contrary to suggestions elsewhere, under no circumstances was Yes Kilkenny ever set up or run as a “front” for anything or anyone else. On the contrary, we are totally committed to the cause of Marriage Equality and LGBT equality generally. My past record of over a decade proves my commitment to the issue of equality and LGBT rights. The high quality of the posts on the Page also reflected this commitment.

The full statement can be read here.

yes kk

Creighton told reporters today that any allegations the page was a ‘front’ for McKee’s campaign are “certainly not true”.

I’ve spoken to Patrick McKee, he wasn’t aware of any of that. I certainly wasn’t aware of it and the party’s ethics officer, Karl Deeter, is dealing with that.

“No member of Renua, to my knowledge, was involved in that,” Creighton added.

Averil Power

Separately, she said Senator Averil Power’s shock resignation from Fianna Fáil “sums up everything I already know about politics, or at least about the old political establishment”.

Diversity of opinions on really sensitive social issues … is just not welcomed in the old parties.

Creighton said she set up Renua to “encourage independent thinking”.

She added that she won’t be actively recruiting Power, but noted she “wouldn’t be shutting the door” to her or “anyone who is talented”.

- with reporting by Hugh O’Connell

“Yes Kilkenny” referendum campaign denies it was a ‘front’ for Renua candidate

Renua looking into claims “Yes Kilkenny” was a ‘front’ for candidate

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Órla Ryan

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