29 October 2009 Edition
Francie Brolly to stand down from Assembly
The 71-year-old Dungiven man retired from teaching in 1998 after 35 years. He was a prominent member of the Assembly Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee and has had a lifelong association with the GAA and the Irish language.
Francie is married with five children. His son, Joe Brolly, was part of Derry’s 1993 All-Ireland Championship winning side. His wife, Anne Brolly, was the first-ever Sinn Féin Mayor of Limavady between 2003 and 2004, the council to which she was elected in 2001.
Francie and Anne have recorded a number of albums of folk and traditional songs and he wrote the renowned The H-Block Song.
There will now be a formal selection process and convention in the East Derry constituency.
Making his announcement, Francie said:
“I have been proud to serve the great people of East Derry in all their diversity and I thank God for the privilege of living among them in what is surely one of the most beautiful parts of Ireland, steeped in culture and rich in history.
“I am confident that Sinn Féin in East Derry is now stronger than at any time in our history.
“This was not an easy decision to make but there comes a point in everyone’s life when they must take such decisions.
“I intend to remain active within Limavady and offer my full support to whoever the constituency selects to replace me in the Assembly.”
Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said:
“Francie Brolly has touched the lives of generations of people throughout Ireland and beyond.
“His has been a life full of commitment and dedication to the cause of Irish freedom and justice, to Irish culture and the language and, as a teacher, to the future of our young people. He brought an immense dignity and humour to the republican struggle.
“Francie will be missed by our Assembly team and on behalf of the party I want to wish him, Anne and their clan all the best for the future. Go néirigh an tádh libh.”