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19 April 2007 Edition

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Ready for General Election battle

The General Election in the 26 Counties has effectively started already and all that remains is for Bertie Ahern to name the date, as he is expected to do when the Dáil resumes after its Easter recess next week.
As An Phoblacht goes to press on Wednesday there is a further indication of this call being made by Ahern next week with the publication of the Government’s Dáil motion to renew the 1998 Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act. This draconian addition to repressive legislation in the 26 Counties is as repugnant as its predecessors dating back to 1939 and Sinn Féin has repeatedly demanded the repeal of the Offences Against the State Acts. It is indicative of the many deficiencies in the Fianna Fáil/PD Government’s approach to the peace process that this renewal will be one of their last acts in office.
Of course their record across the entire range of policy is fundamentally flawed. Fianna Fáil ‘the Republican Party’ has been content to allow the Progressive Democrats to set the pace on many issues. At the same time they can blame the PDs when things go wrong. But this act is wearing very thin with people and only the most naïve will be convinced that the responsibility for the shambles of the public health services is Mary Harney’s alone. Three Health Ministers – two Fianna Fáil and one PD – have presided over this mess for the past decade and under one Taoiseach – Bertie Ahern.
Sinn Féin is ready for this General Election as never before. The party will be fielding 42 candidates in 41 constituencies. All but two of the 43 Dáil constituencies will be contested by Sinn Féin and in each and every case the party is out to win seats and is confident of sending a greatly strengthened team of TDs back to Leinster House this summer.
The Sinn Féin platform is both radical and relevant. It prioritises the provision of public services for all on the basis of equality. The prosperity of the last decade could have been used to build first-class services in health, housing, education, public transport and regional development. Instead it has been left to the unbridled free market to meet social needs and as a result inequality has worsened.
Now people are looking for a real alternative and there is a ready reception for the positive and progressive message which Sinn Féin candidates have been bringing to the doorsteps for many months. The election battle proper is almost upon us and republicans are more than ready.

An Phoblacht Magazine

AN PHOBLACHT MAGAZINE:

  • The first edition of this new magazine will feature a 10 page special on the life and legacy of our leader Martin McGuinness to mark the first anniversary of his untimely passing.
  • It will include a personal reminiscence by Gerry Adams and contributions from the McGuinness family.
  • There will also be an exclusive interview with our new Uachtarán Mary Lou McDonald.

Buy An Phoblacht magazine here

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