Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Easter Commemorations

Easter Commemorations Cork City & County

Easter Saturday
Bantry 8pm wreath-laying ceremony

Easter Sunday
Youghal assemble 11am at the Devonshire Arms main speaker Cllr David Cullinane

Bandon 12.30pm main speaker Mary-Lou McDonald

Clonakilty 12.30pm wreath-laying cemetery

Cork City 2pm assemble National Monument Grand Parade for march to the Republican Plot at St.Finbarr's cemetery, main speaker Mary-Lou McDonald.

Easter Monday

Cobh 2pm assemble at the Fire Station (Top of the Hill) main speaker Cllr Thomas Gould.

For more info contact the Sinn Fein office tel 021/4311389 or Mick Nugent at 087/6755793.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Last Man Standing

Last Man Standing

Last Weeks Results:

Saturday 20th March

Aston Villa 2 Wolves 2
Everton 2 Bolton Wanderers 0
Portsmouth 3 Hull City 2
Stoke City 1 Spurs 2
Sunderland 3 Birmingham City 1
Wigan Athletic 1 Burnley 0
Arsenal 2 West Ham Utd 0

Sunday 21st March

Man Utd 2 Liverpool 1
Fulham 1 Man City 2
Blackburn Rovers 1 Chelsea `

This Weeks Fixtures- All 3pm unless Stated

Saturday 27th March

Birmingam City v Arsenal
Chelsea v Aston Villa
Hull City v Fulham
Spurs v Portsmouth
West Ham Utd v Stoke City
Wolves v Everton
Bolton v Man Utd 5.30pm

Sunday 28th March

Burnley V Blackburn Rovers 12.00pm
Liverpool v Sunderland 4.00pm

Monday 29th March

Man City v Wigan Athletic 8.00pm

We still have 14 players left chasing the prize of €450 so good luck for this week! 7 Games left to go...

Press Release

Property Owners Can Close Down Headshops Sinn Féin’s Jonathan O’Brien has called on landlords who rent property to Headshops to shut them down by refusing to continue leasing to them.

Cllr O’Brien stated: “Every week brings new confirmation of the dangers of the products being sold in so-called Headshops, and more cases of people enduring psychotic episodes or other side-effects from using them.” “The government has promised legislation to ban some of these products, but it will not be enacted until June. This is too little too late. The Headshops will simply come up with new products to bypass the law as they have done in the past. What is needed – and what Sinn Féin has proposed – is a comprehensive system of regulation for this area, which would put the onus on Headshop owners to prove their products are safe to use.” “In the meantime, however, there is a way to close down many of these shops tomorrow.”

“Property-owners should refuse to let their premises to Headshops. It is possible that some landlords were not aware of the nature of these shops, or their dangers, when they agreed to rent retail space to them. However there is now no such excuse. Property-owners who continue to lease their premises to Headshops are complicit in their legal drug-dealing, and in the consequences that flow from it.” “I would appeal to all property-owners in the city not to let their premises to Headshops, and to end the leases at the earliest possible opportunity where they already do so.” For further information contact Cllr Jonathan O’Brien @ 085-2133907

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Cork Ógra get active on National Campaign

Cork Ógra hit the streets on wednesday, St Patricks day, to kick start the local efforts in the national campaign.A number of activists gave out hundreds of leaflets as well as promoting the easter lily in the middle of Cork City ahead of the parade. At the same time, Ógra activist Joe Lynch was targeting the Balincollig parade, and a number of Ógra activists along with members of the Youghal Republican Flute band leafleted the parade in Youghal, East Cork. The leaflets attracted significant attention and hopefully sparked a degree of debate on the issue.

Ógra activist Niamh Kerins had this to say 'St Patricks day is a day when we are all proud to be Irish and celebrate what that means. But many people can sometimes disregard the fact that we have partition and that part of our country remains occupied, and its our job to challenge that. We got a great reaction today, as did our comrades in Ballincollig and Youghal, and people were interested in the arguments we were making for unity.

This is only a starting point though, and we must go on from here to really engage with people and popularise republicanism, and challenge attitudes.'

Last Man Standing

Last Man Standing

Last Weeks Results:

Saturday 13th March

Spurs 3 Blackburn 1
Birmingham City 2 Everton 2
Bolton Wanderers 4 Wigan Athletic 0
Burnley 1 Wolves 2
Chelsea 4 West Ham 1
Stoke City 0 Aston Villa 0
Hull City 1 Arsenal 2

Sunday 14th March

Man Utd 3 Fulham 0
Sunderland 1 Man City 1

Monday 15th March

Liverpool 4 Portsmouth 1

This weeks fixtures

Saturday 20th March-All 3pm unless stated

Aston Villa v Wolves 12.45pm
Everton v Bolton Wanderers
Portsmouth v Hull City
Stoke City v Spurs
Sunderland v Birmingham City
Wigan Athletic v Burnley
Arsenal v West Ham Utd 5.30pm

Sunday 21st March

Man Utd v Liverpool 1.30pm
Fulham v Man City
Blackburn Rovers v Chelsea 4.00pm

We still have 16 players chasing the prize of €450 so good luck for this week!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Ard-Fheis speech

Gerry Adam's Presidential Speech to the 2010 Sinn Féin Ard Fheis.


A half a million citizens unemployed. Social welfare payments cut. Wages cut. Health and Education in crisis. Families facing eviction. Mass emigration back again. Parts of the country under water. In other parts the drinking water is unsafe. Billions of taxpayers money gifted to a dysfunctional, toxic banking system.

Widespread anger, rage even, at the government parties. And a sense of hopelessness and disbelief.

It would be easy for me to stand up here and to rail against the government – to become Mr. Angry for a half an hour. But that is not enough.

Most people know how bad this government is. They elected it. Which is why there is such a sense of betrayal. Most people also know that the policies of a Fine Gael led government would be no different from this one.

The Irish people deserve better.

Everyone who lives on this island has the right to a home; to a safe environment; to access to education and child-care; to civil and religious liberty; and to meaningful work with proper terms and conditions. Everyone has the right to health care.

Everybody has the right to equality, and to respect and dignity.

This is the essence of republicanism. It is the essence of citizenship.

Is any of this reflected in today’s Ireland? The answer to that is no.

Sinn Féin believes in a genuine republic. Not a nominal dictionary republic, but one in which the people are truly sovereign.

I gceann cúpla seachtain beidh muid ag ceiliúradh agus cuimhní ar na haislingigh a chuaigh amach le linn Seachtain na Cásca.

D’ardaigh said brat na hÉireann os cionn Oifig an Phoist anseo i mBaile Átha Cliath. Is maith is eol dúinn go raibh fís ag na fir agus na mná seo. Bhí sé de rún acu deireadh a chur le riail na Breataine sa tír seo agus tír iomlán nua a thógáil anseo.

Bhí fís acu don Phoblacht Nua le saoirse ag croílár an chlár rialtais réabhlóideach s’acu.

An aithneodh siad an stát seo mar bhuaic na haislinge sin? Ní dóigh liom é.

The Proclamation of the Republic asserts the need to cherish all the children of the nation equally. It doesn’t say 26 counties of the nation. It speaks of ALL the nation and ALL its parts. All 32 counties.

The Proclamation speaks to ALL the children of the Nation. It doesn’t say – unless you are poor or elderly. Or unless you have autism; or learning difficulties; or disabilities. Or unless you come from a remote rural area. Or from Moyross or Sheriff Street; or Strabane or Ballymena.

It doesn’t say unless you are a child in the care of the state. The protection of children is a fundamental human right. The protection of children is the responsibility of all of us and it should be guaranteed in the constitution

The establishment parties, like us, know that republicanism is in many ways the conscience of the Irish people. Little wonder that they wrap themselves in republican rhetoric while avoiding any genuine examination of the real meaning of republicanism.

Which brings us to the hard question. How can society be changed? How can a real republic be achieved?

The answer to that starts in the heart. It is a belief in people. That is the starting point. And what starts in the heart has to move to the head. It is not enough to wax lyrical about peoples’ rights.

We have to stand up for these rights.

The people of Ireland have yet to realise our destiny as a nation. We have yet to complete our journey.

This summer marks the 40th Anniversary of the IRA appearing on the streets of Belfast when Republicans joined with the people of the Ballymaccarett in the defence of St. Matthews chapel and An Trá Ghearr.

That single act of resistance. This stand against the Orange State marked the beginning of a journey for many activists. That journey has seen struggle and strategies played out on the streets, in the jails and round the negotiating table.

During this time Irish society has changed in many fundamental ways

Imagine what can be achieved now in these more peaceful times with the leveling of the political playing field and in a climate were the phony republicanism of the establishment is being laid bare.

So, we have to build on all that is good in our society. We have to recognise all our heroes and heroines; all the carers and health workers; all the active citizens in the community and the voluntary sector, people involved in sports, the arts and music; all those citizens who create hope in place of misery, and common purpose in place of mé féinism and selfishness.

The key to building the new republic, democratically shaped by the people, is to start now. We have to embrace our strengths. Our language. Our unique culture. Our history.

And all of us who believe in a better way, in a just society, in a real republic; we need to make our beliefs relevant to more and more people. We need to be about empowerment. We need to raise our voices. We need to make a stand.

If ever Ireland needed leadership it needs it now. Leaders from throughout our communities. Leaders who will make a stand.

We need leaders who will give voice on the ground and from the ground up, to the belief they have in their hearts, so that hope and networks for change can be built.

We need leaders to ensure that no banker will evict a family from their home.

That no farm of land will be sold off over a family’s head.

That no worker will be victimised.

We need leaders to ensure that no community will be robbed of its social entitlements.

But let me be clear about this. I am not talking about leaders coming down to us from on high. I am talking about everyone who is prepared to stand against corruption, greed and injustice.

Every woman, every man, every citizen who makes such a stand is a leader.

Every little act of resistance, of rebellion, of protest, makes change possible.

Most struggles aren’t won by single actions. Or by iconic leaders. Though they have their role.

They are won by people, taking individual actions, which accumulate into irreversible change.

It was true of the suffragettes. It was true of the anti-apartheid movement. It was true when Rosa Parks wouldn’t give up her seat and it is true here in Ireland.

When the Celtic Tiger economy was at its height, and when the surplus of wealth was the greatest in the history of this state, the establishment refused to distribute the wealth in the common good and to secure the future.

They would not nationalise the wealth.

But now they are happy to nationalise the debt.

There is talk of a Cabinet reshuffle. This government doesn’t need a reshuffle. This government needs to go.

Do they really think the people are amadáns. Do they really expect the people to foot the bill for the bankers, the developers and their political cronies?

The people need to send them a message. The people need to tell them to get lost.

Don’t wait until the next election. Make a stand now. Be a leader. Don’t wait for anyone else.

That’s the main thing, to stand up for ourselves. And for others. That is what happened throughout our history.

In our homes. On the streets. On lonely hillsides. By glensides. In the prisons.

This is what happened in the history of human kind. It’s what is happening across the globe.

Representatives from many of these struggles are with us tonight.

Cead mile Failte romhaibh to all of our visitors.

Especially, to our friends from the Basque country; from the USA and Canada; from Cuba; from South Africa and from Palestine. All these struggles show the enduring power of the human spirit in the search for freedom and justice.

Change is possible, if we really want it. And those of us who care about the world; who care about Ireland; those of us who believe in the people of this island, we have no choice but to make a stand, particularly for those citizens who cannot at this time stand up for themselves.

Sinn Féin is opposed to this government because it’s not fair and because its policies are unsustainable.

But we are also opposed to them because there is an alternative that will work.

Sinn Féin has produced thoughtful, costed and effective policies to chart a course beyond this recession.

Sinn Féin has set out how we would do this through a major €3.2 billion stimulus package.

- We would establish a jobs retention fund for small and medium businesses.

- We would set up a youth jobs fund to create 20,000 jobs.

- We would use the public sector to kickstart the economy

- We would include a social clause in public contracts for hiring of a set number of apprentices, young unemployed and long term unemployed, as has been done in the north by the Sinn Féin Minister for Regional Development Conor Murphy.

- We would reclaim Brand Ireland and introduce an aggressive all-Ireland export strategy.

All of this is possible. Jobs can be protected. Jobs can be created. Frontline public services can be sustained and developed if public finance is raised in a fair way. This means real social solidarity. This means uniting public and private sector workers, not dividing them.

Among our proposals are:
• a third rate of tax for those earning more than €100,000 a year;
• a solidarity tax of 1% on all assets worth more than €1 million, excluding farm land;
• and an end to the hundreds of unfair tax reliefs which this government refuses to get rid of.

The biggest scandal of all is the pouring of billions of taxpayers’ money into a toxic banking system and NAMA. There is no NAMA for workers. And now the banks, which pay their CEOs half a million Euro a year, are increasing interest rates for the same taxpayers who are bailing them out. And at the same time they are refusing credit to small or medium businesses. And they are getting away with it.

Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin called it right when he said ‘the closer you are to a minister in the Dublin government the less you will suffer.’

This Fianna Fail/Green Party government has also inflicted deep cuts on the farming sector and on disadvantaged rural areas. Sinn Féin understands the difficulties facing rural communities.

Our TDs and our Senator have produced three major Oireachtas reports. These set out proposals to regenerate the west, to ensure a viable future for fishing and farming communities, and to create more jobs in the agri-food sector.

In the north Minister for Agriculture, Michelle Gildernew, is tackling the needs of farmers in disadvantaged areas and the needs of rural women.

Ó thaobh an tuaiscirt de, tá sárobair déanta ag Martin McGuinness agus foireann na gcainteanna Sinn Féin. Bhí an tionól agus na hinstitiúidí uile Éireann i gcontúirt mar gheall ar chonstaicí an DUP.

Ach le díograis agus fócas ár ndaoine, bhí Sinn Féin agus an DUP ábalta teacht ar chomhaontú nua. Rinne Aontachtóirí conradh le Poblachtánaigh agus bhog muid an próiseas iomlán seo ar aghaidh go dtí an chéad chéim eile.

Just over a month ago we concluded an agreement at Hillsborough with the DUP on the way forward.

Many thought this couldn’t happen. But it did. This was a hugely important, and symbolic moment. I want to pay tribute to Martin McGuinness, and Gerry Kelly and our other Ministers, as well as to the Sinn Féin negotiating team, for all their hard work. Here is proof, if proof was needed of the importance of negotiations as an area of struggle.

Under this Agreement powers on policing and justice will be transferred in April. By the end of the year there will also be the transfer of powers from London to Belfast to deal with the issue of parades. More powers moving from England to Ireland.

Outstanding issues including Irish language rights will also be delivered on and there is additional funding for the language.

This Agreement is a staging post. It is proof that change is possible.

Sinn Féin achieved all this by being bold and by being focussed. By standing up for ourselves. By standing up to the governments. By standing up for the rights of citizens in a continuous process of change.

The last year has been a challenging one for us, for the peace process and for the people of this island.

It has also been a difficult period for my clann. I thank everyone who has expressed solidarity with my family. Colette in particular has asked me to thank everyone who sent her get well messages. Go raibh mile maith agaibh go leir

I want to congratulate Maurice Quinlivan on his determination to clear his good name.

In the end Willie tripped over his own moustache but be assured he would still be in this awful government if Maurice had not made a stand. Maith an fear Maurice.

Will that end the attacks on Sinn Féin? Of course not. The only difference between Willie and the other smearers and backstabbers is that Willie got caught out.

As this government lurches toward an election we can expect more of this. But we have a message for the government and its fellow travellers. Let there be no doubt about this. Given the mandate, Sinn Féin will dismantle the culture of political cronyism and the golden circles.

This proud party is interested only in making a positive difference in the lives of the Irish people. Those who say that this isn’t possible should look to what is emerging from our efforts in government in the north.

This includes tackling fuel poverty; it means free travel for the over 60s; the ending of prescription charges; and the freezing of the regional rate. Sinn Féin Ministers have introduced class room assistants in every P1 and P2 class; we have invested in schools; in jobs; in infrastructure. We have staved off water charges; and brought forward funding to tackle rural poverty and social exclusion.

Everything that Sinn Féin has done is rooted in the equality agenda. That is why some of the big initiatives, particularly on education, have met such resistance.

The opposition to the removal of the 11 plus is mainly class driven and arises from the desire of a small minority to protect an unequal system. Parents want the best for their children. So do we.

Our commitment is to ensure that every school is a good school and that every child has full equality of opportunity. I am absolutely convinced that this will be the outcome, not least because of the leadership shown by the Minister of Education, Caitríona Ruane and progressive educationalists, and teachers.

In the next few weeks the Westminster elections will give us the opportunity to strengthen our mandate. We will be making a stand in every constituency in the Six Counties.

If the northern Assembly runs to its full term all communities in the north will have benefited from Sinn Féin in government. We are already planning for the next Assembly term.

This will build on the successes of our Assembly team and set more challenging targets and goals for Sinn Féin in government.

And let me invite the viewers at home to help us write that manifesto for change. Sinn Féin will once again be holding Town Hall meetings.

We want to be a citizen’s conduit to government. I invite you to come along – to put your issue – your needs – your requirements on the Executive table.

Unionism? Unionism knows that Sinn Féin is a willing partner in a government that is responsive, effective and delivering. One of the big tasks facing the Executive is to eradicate sectarianism. The vast majority of people want this. There is work for everyone.

And it is up to unionists to demonstrate that unionism and sectarianism are not the same and that they are as opposed to sectarianism as we are.

Luaigh mé níos luaithe na haislingigh naoi deag se deag agus fís na Poblachta a bhí acu. Bhí fís ag Wolfe Tone roimhe sin. Chuir seisean síos ar an nasc leis an Bhreatain mar foinse dár gcuid trioblóidí polaitiúla go léir. Caithfidh muid teacht ar ais chuige agus muid ag ullmhú don chéad chuid eile den turas don Phoblacht Nua.

In many ways we are back with Tone and the need to unite catholic, protestant and dissenter. We do this by making friends with unionists and developing normal human relationships based on tolerance, respect and equality. Let us be clear about this; the unity of people in everyday life and the unity of this great country of ours is part of the same human endeavour.

Sinn Féin believes that a free, independent and United Ireland makes political and economic sense.

Last year I set out our intention to engage with the Irish diaspora and to marshal its political strength in support of a United Ireland.

Over the last twelve months thousands of people came together in New York, San Francisco, Toronto and London at major conferences to put their weight behind the demand for Irish unity. This campaign is gathering momentum. Now is the time to make partition history. Now is the time to build an Ireland we can be proud of.

Sinn Féin is united and strong. Sinn Féin is looking to the future. Sinn Féin is making a stand.

The British army, the heavy gangs, the old Orange regime and slíbhín governments here could not break us. Censorship, the prisons and the death squads could not break us.

And no amount of black propaganda in the Tony O’Reilly press will break us either.

20 years ago Nelson Mandela – Madiba – the first President of a free South Africa - walked free from prison.

20 years ago there was war in Ireland.

So, when someone tells you that that apartheid would never end; or that peace is not possible; or that a United Ireland is ‘pie in the sky’; or that we can’t make a deal with the DUP; or that we can’t beat this recession; don’t believe them – not for one second. Believe in yourself.

Make a stand. Make it happen. Join us. Tiocfaidh ár lá

Monday, March 8, 2010

Cork Sinn Féin held a picket last Thursday 4th March on the 'Brightside Head Shop' in Washington st following concerns over products on sale there, pictured on the picket are Cllrs Jonathan O'Brien & Thomas Gould.

Easter Function

Cork Sinn Féin Easter Fundraiser featuring Clan Carney, Easter Sunday April 4th 9pm at An Spailpín Fanach, South Main st, Cork City, táille €10, tickets available from the Sinn Féin office, tel 021/4311389.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Sinn Féin Head Shop Meeting

Cork Sinn Féin held a public information meeting on 'Head Shops' on Thursday 25th February in the Imperial Hotel, Cllr Henry Cremin chaired the meeting with Cllr Thomas Gould and David Lane (pictured) co-ordinator of the Cork City & County Drug Task Force speaking. The well attended meeting heard several contributions from concerned members of the public including from one Mother who stated her 16 year old son fell seriously ill after his 15 year old friend bought tablets in a 'Head Shop' in Cork City centre.

Pub Quiz

Cork Sinn Féin Pub Quiz Fundraiser
Tuesday 16th March (Eve of St.Patrick's day) 8.30pm at the Tory Top Bar Ballyphehane, €20 for table of four.

Press Release-Sinn Féin to picket Head Shop

Sinn Féin will picket the “Bright Side” head shop on Washington Street at 1pm this Thursday after allegations that it is selling party pills to under 18s.

Councillor Jonathan O’Brien stated: “At a public meeting organised by Sinn Féin last week, a member of the audience described how her fifteen year-old son was rushed to hospital after taking a so-called “party pill” purchased by a friend of his in the Bright Side head shop.” “This underlines the very real danger of the products being sold by these shops – many of which are substitutes for drugs like ecstasy or cocaine, and whose ingredients and effects are largely unknown.” “It is completely unacceptable that products such as these are being sold to young teenagers. In response, Sinn Féin will be picketing the Head Shop in question at lunchtime on Thursday.”

“We also want to highlight the need for strict regulation of these outlets. Sinn Féin has already put forward a detailed set of proposals about how this can be done.” For further information contact Cllr Jonathan O’Brien @ 085-2133907