SDLP must take a moral lead

Malachi O’Doherty argues that the people we can least afford to listen to after the apparent failure of the peace process are those individuals that pursuaded the bulk of the population that the Belfast Agreement would bring the IRA in from the cold. Indeed he believes that key players, like John Hume and Albert Reynolds have too much invested in the past, to be trusted to rise above their own narrow political interests.

The ball he believes is with the SDLP. And the challenge:

…is that they will be left looking as if they have left unionism to take the moral lead against criminality in government if they push now for further negotiations. A great clarity will descend if they simply accept that the project is over now, that Hume-Adams, from their perspective, was a brave and honest effort that failed.

And he suggests the action that should be taken:

Durkan should do to Hume what Kruschev did to Stalin and be done with the legacy. He should say in the clearest terms that he does not trust Sinn Fein and that he would not have the gall to ask anyone else to. Then he should fight them with unabashed vigour in local government and in Westminster elections, offering to nationalists a party leadership that supports the police, believes in good government and isn’t spying on them.

  • TroubledTimes

    It makes sense, but is Durkan up for the challenge? In todays media circles he has become insignificant. I cant remember the last time I even saw Durkan in the news. Dont get me wrong I like the man but he needs to start making a bit more noise. You cannot be a leader of a political party and be insignificant to the media.
    The SDLP are giving SF a free run. I dont think there will be many SDLP candidates at Westminster elections confident of winning their seats.
    Interesting times ahead.

  • JD

    So, apart from disliking the ‘RA, what in the name of god do the SDLP actually stand for?

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    ‘Indeed he believes that key players, like John Hume and Albert Reynolds have too much invested in the past, to be trusted to rise above their own narrow political interests.’

    A case of pot, kettle black if ever there was one.

  • TroubledTimes

    What do you mean JD?
    Surely you know there are a world of differences between SF and SDLP.
    Can you answer this: If the SDLP hate Sinn Fein why is it? And if their hate runs that deep surely would they not have sidelined SF years ago and went it alone in the Peace Process?

  • JD

    TT

    It’s a case of “I know what you’re against, but what are you for?”

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    ‘If the SDLP hate Sinn Fein why is it? And if their hate runs that deep surely would they not have sidelined SF years ago and went it alone in the Peace Process?’

    Why should the SDLP buy into the undemocratic nature of unionism by subscribing to the policy of exclusion that unionists have operated since the formation of this statelet?

  • TroubledTimes

    I see your point PatMcLarnon, but it does depend on what the exclusion is based upon surely?
    If Sinn Fein are excluded based on factual evidence that the IRA carried out the Northern Bank heist do you think it would still be unreasonable for the SDLP to enter Government without Sinn Fein?
    I dont think Sinn Fein would have much of a problem going it alone without the SDLP?

  • TroubledTimes

    Please elaborate JD, with respect, I find your comments a bit vague.

  • JD

    Did anyone else twitch when poor old John Hume was compared to Stalin…? If this keeps up, and with some imagination, all the world’s holocausts could be worked the NI situation…

  • JD

    TT

    I just want to know where the SDLP stand on the important issues, and what non-platitudinous alternatives they are offering the Nationalist punter.

    Apart from squabbling with SF, what are their goals, aims and strategies?

  • TroubledTimes

    I think you will have to ask the SDLP that one JD but in saying that what are Sinn Fein offering?

  • aquifer

    Sorry I am a bit slow. The SDLP position of always including SF in a devolved arrangement, or else appointing commissioners to overrule representatives elected in NI, is an extremely irish nationalist construction. The SDLP are conceding sovereignty to the IRA army council and insulting people who have will no truck with fascist murderers. Its a deeply sectarian position far from any democratic socialism familiar to me.

    From this could they be prepared to handle stolen political goods dragged through the blood of irish people?

    Mature men prepared to neglect the sectarian excess of SF and socialist principles, to maintain their own cultural comfort zone?

    Maybe they need help from some other alleged socialists in ROI and UK, if they are to avoid a disgraceful old age.

  • TroubledTimes

    Answer me this Aquifer. Is Sinn Fein’s mandate reflective of their policy, or is their vote based on misleading aspirations?
    If Sinn Fein are what you believe them to be, why are so many Catholics voting for them? Are Sinn Fein voters misguided?

  • cgmoron

    Excellent call Malachi,
    I feel Durkan will rise to the occasion. He is a very talented leader and anyone who has heard him speak will endorse this. Irish Nationalism needs strong leadership at this time.
    It is such a shame to think so many nationalists have been duped into supporting SF/IRA over the last 10 yrs. Lets hope the tide is now about to turn and the people wake up smell the coffee and reject SF/IRA scum

  • Roger W. Christ XVII

    cgmoron, Durkan hasn’t risen to the occasion whatsoever. He’s said basically nothing since the Leeds Castle talks.

  • cgmoron

    Roger,
    Respectfully I said will. I agree he has been quiet.

  • IJP

    He should say in the clearest terms that he does not trust Sinn Fein and that he would not have the gall to ask anyone else to. Then he should fight them with unabashed vigour in local government and in Westminster elections, offering to nationalists a party leadership that supports the police, believes in good government and isn’t spying on them.

    He should. But he won’t.

  • IJP

    Excellent post aquifier.

    TT

    If Sinn Fein are what you believe them to be, why are so many Catholics voting for them?

    Because the opposition’s so diabolical! Note, however, that SF is increasing its percentage, not its total vote (its total vote has actually declined at each of the last three region-wide elections) – so it’s more a case of the SDLP (and others) losing votes than SF gaining them.

    Are Sinn Fein voters misguided?

    Those who think an SF vote will genuinely lead to stability and democracy (or an ‘Ireland of Equals’ if you will) are, yes.

    cgmoron

    Respectfully I said will.

    Why has he not then?

    You have no evidence to base your claim on. Based on the evidence, he will meander about the point as usual.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    TT

    ‘If Sinn Fein are excluded based on factual evidence that the IRA carried out the Northern Bank heist do you think it would still be unreasonable for the SDLP to enter Government without Sinn Fein?’

    The fact remains O’Doherty and others want SF excluded now, before any evidence has emerged. I am of the opinion no evideence will ever emerge.

    IJP,

    correct on the actual numbers voting SF, but your analysis applies right across the board. It is a fact that some elections register a higher voter turn out than others. European are traditionally poor and the last Assembly elections were held in the depth of winter. Afterall Alliance didn’t even attempt Europe last time around.

  • TroubledTimes

    Patmclarnon, who do you mean by O Doherty and others?

  • TroubledTimes

    Answer the question, do you think it is unreasonable for the SDLP to enter into devolved Government if it is true that the IRA are behind the Bank heist?

  • vespasian

    The SDLP have always held the key to peace in Northern Ireland they could have decided to work closely with democratic unionists instead of trying to legitimise SF with the Pan Nationalist front.

    John Hume having originally wrested control away from Fitt Devlin and other moderates decided to stake the future of Northern Ireland at the obvious expense of the SDLP on working with SF and Reynolds.

    Durkan now has the opportunity to come out from the shadow of the legacy of Hume and be his own man and show that the the D in SDLP really means something and can again become the true representatives of Democratic Irish Nationalism.

    I hope he is up to the task!

  • Robert Keogh

    IJP,

    point of information:
    Note, however, that SF is increasing its percentage, not its total vote (its total vote has actually declined at each of the last three region-wide elections)

    To follow up on Pat’s comment, every single party (gaining more than 10k votes) has registered a decline in total numbers of votes in each of the three last elections.

    I am surprised that you had this information on SF but were unaware that this applied to the other parties too. Why was that?

  • aquifer

    TT

    You ask ‘Is Sinn Fein’s mandate reflective of their policy, or is their vote based on misleading aspirations?
    If Sinn Fein are what you believe them to be, why are so many Catholics voting for them? Are Sinn Fein voters misguided?’

    Sinn Fein’s vote is rational enough so long as we are kept in political limbo by Unionist incapacity or intransigence, so that an incentive remains to adopt a strong nationalist negotiating position visa vi the constitution. The governments’ failure to drive through implementation of the GFA over particular party interests also helps SF.

    The IRA have the added option of being able to add instability if things are not going SF’s way, or if Unionists look like sobering up, so that the constitution might again seem in play, possibly strengthening the case for voting SF. However reactions to a resumption of a conventional terrorist campaign could be very unpredictable for SF IRA. The British have established their bone fides, whatever SF say, and post 9/11, Bosnia, and the fall of the iron curtain, SFIRA could quickly find themselves constrained.

    If the Unionists do not or cannot offer reasonable or even respectful terms for agreement, why not aspire, there is no incentive to settle. People can vote SF confident they are unlikely personally to face the economic or violent conseqences of SF state socialist and sectarian politics, due to the homeowning consensus in ireland and to british law and order. Voting SF they also get the satisfaction of winding up the arrogant pompous and self-righeous Orangies. Almost irresistable, but the SF vote is threatened by apathy. The celtic or more properly the atlantic tiger may have more bite for the young and able. Aspiration may end up as ethereal.

  • IJP

    RK

    Don’t be smug, son, it’ll get you nowhere.

    In case you didn’t bother to read it, I wrote: so it’s more a case of the SDLP (and others) losing votes than SF gaining them. Self-evidently that refers to others losing votes faster still.

    Only a fool would ignore that point, and indeed the general point that the sectarian farce that we call politics is turning people in general off.

  • Hector

    Posted by: vespasian at January 31, 2005 11:54 PM
    ‘The SDLP have always held the key to peace in Northern Ireland they could have decided to work closely with democratic unionists instead of trying to legitimise SF with the Pan Nationalist front’

    Where didn’t the SDLP work with unionists given the opportunity?

  • puddinhead

    The sdlp need to show themselves

  • New Yorker

    O’Doherty is absolutely right. There is only one right and moral course for SDLP. Yes, Hume made a mistake, but made it with good intentions. SDLP should not take the position that they took a risk for peace and a better NI but it did not work out as it is now emminently clear SF is unqualified to be in government. Many who voted SF were duped and many were intiminated. Now they can vote for the better party. To find out their positions they should go to http://www.sdlp.ie. May the yoke of criminality, violence and intimination be lifted off the nationalist people as they see they were taken for Suckers and Fools and there is a better way.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    TT,

    ‘Patmclarnon, who do you mean by O Doherty and others?’

    I mean the writer of the article and those pro unionist parties who want SF excluded from the process now before any evidence of any wrong doing has been forwarded.

    ‘Answer the question, do you think it is unreasonable for the SDLP to enter into devolved Government if it is true that the IRA are behind the Bank heist?’

    I cannot make a judgement of what is unreasonable regarding SDLP policy, I do know that for them to go forward now would be inconsistent. Inclusivity has been a cornerstone of SDLP since the ridiculous round of endless talks under Brooke etc that went absolutely no where.
    I am of the opinion that unionists are in no position to act as yardsticks for what passes for democracy here, Blair et al even less. The GFA stands in full or it falls, quite simple really.

  • Davros

    The GFA stands in full or it falls, quite simple really.

    Strict adherence to the Mitchell principles ? Aye, right.

  • J Kelly

    The SDLP have been sending mixed messages for a lifetime. The most ludricous example of this was at the Assembly Elections when they placed two advertisements in Derry News papers. In the Derry Journal they had as headline 100% for a United Ireland and in the Unionist Londonderry Sentinel the United Ireland reference was ommitted. The joke in Derry was that the SDLP were only for a United Ireland on the Derry side. No party can stand for two opposing positions they are either for a United Ireland in which case unionist will not share power in any case or you are for a cosy six county settlement. If they opt for the latter through a voluntary coalition SF will destroy them at the polls.

    And for anyone to argue that Mark Durkan is a good leader you only have to look at the mess he has made of the SDLP in Derry. Before he was leader the SDLP were as close to a political dynasty as you could imagine and now they are completely split down the middle and its all down to very poor leadership in the run up to the assembly elections. Without getting into the election forecasts again would anyone on this board have give SF a chance in Foyle two or three years ago. Now everyone is saying its to close to call. Again bad leadership on behalf of Durkan.

    On the wider stage he is irrevelant and is only being promoted at present because Blair has found as use for him. Mark Durkan is a very bright politican but his obvious strenghts lie behind the scenes not leading but the problem for the SDLP who else.

  • Christopher Stalford

    J Kelly

    Who else indeed? It’s hardly like the Deputy Leader of the SDLP is a credible replacement.

    The difficulty facing Durkan is that the seeming bulk of his part want to get stuck into the Shinners following the Northern Bank heist, but the leader remains wedded to the failed policy of the Hume-era, i.e. taking the Provos by the hand and more latterly providing cover for them.

    Durkan needs to re-define what exactly a post-Hume SDLP stands for. At the minute he just looks dead in the water.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Any SDLP members on here care to offer comment?

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    ‘The difficulty facing Durkan is that the seeming bulk of his part want to get stuck into the Shinners following the Northern Bank heist, but the leader remains wedded to the failed policy of the Hume-era, i.e. taking the Provos by the hand and more latterly providing cover for them.’

    While Alasdair Mc Donnell and Eddie Mc Grady are indeed pretty bulky they do not constitute the bulk of the SDLP party. Apart from a few kite flying solos by these two individuals there is no evidence to back up that assertion.

  • J Kelly

    The reason that the bulk of the SDLP want to get stuck into the shinners is purely down to revenge and jealousy. Many of these people thought with the blessing of the british and irish establishment they had the god given right to expect the majority of nationalist votes for ever and a day and do nothing for the people in return. At the Euro elections one of the SDLP stalwarts in Derry when realising that the SF vote was turning out in strenghth said if thats what the people wanted they on their heads be it. This attitude is prevelant among the SDLP we know better just leave it to us. Those days are gone and if Durkan realises anything he understands that a stand up toe to toe with SF and SF will come out in front.

    The SDLP may believe Hugh Orde but its nagging at the back of their minds what if this is a dirty trick or simply Orde has got it wrong. They know the feeling in the nationalist community is produce the evidence.

  • Davros

    pat- after SF’s antics in Armagh, there may be more SDLP on for confrontation.

    SDLP ‘furious’ at Sinn Fein

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence ffrom chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • J Kelly

    Davros these local spats happen every day of the week in the run up to local elections. Many local councillors especially SDLP councillors are feeling very nervous at the moment and again this is causing difficulties for Durkan many of his own want to attack attack attack and he is as usual diterhing looking for the funny soundbite that he never seems to get.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence ffrom chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence ffrom chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence from chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence from chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence from chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence from chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Pat

    Anecdotal evidence from chatting to various members of the SDLP, from all over the country indicates the view I express above. Although you are right to point out that thus far McGrady (who genuinely believes it) and McDonnell (who needs to bury Maskey in South Belfast) are the only two thus far to have broken cover and get stuck in to Sinn Fein.

    J Kelly

    SDLP-SF toe-to-toe fight, SF may well come out in front. But standing still and hoping to gentrify the Provo’s hasn’t exactly worked either, has it? The SDLP needs to try something new. Whatever the motivations, be it jealousy, hatred or a desire for revenge, it’s about time the SDLP came out fighting. Whether its been left too late, I don’t know, but they may as well try a new direction.

  • Christopher Stalford

    Stupid commenting system!

  • J Kelly

    Christopher if you mean by gentrifying the provos that republicans will become another SDLP and take what ever is on offer from Blair or Paisley for that matter you and many others will have a long wait. Republicans have been very clear the GFA and the entire peace process are only stages on the long road to establishing a united Ireland. And by the way they make no apologies for this stance.

    This is the problem for the SDLP the more they attck Sinn Fein the more greener they become and it loses unionist votes but if the do not stand up for nationalist the lose nationalist votes a no one situation for a party used to sitting on the fence. The peace process has made the fence a very uncomfortable place to be. Its time to stand up and be counted and Durkan couldn’t be decisive over what he wants for dinner he probably changes his mind ten times a day. A dithering fool cannot lead.

  • vespasian

    Hector

    The Northern Ireland Forum for Political Dialogue (known as “The Forum”) is one example.

  • Christopher Stalford

    “A dithering fool cannot lead.”

    Have you told Cunningham House yet?

  • DerryTerry

    J Kelly

    Very harsh on Mark Durkan. He may be a dithering fool but i doubt anyone would be able to lead a party as dysfunctional and personality driven as the SDLP at the moment.

    Here in Derry you have the sight of at least two SDLP’s, one centred on Mark Durkan, one centred on Pat Ramsey, and a number of party councillors and stalwarts floating in between. If Mark Dukan struggles to lead in Derry City, any wonder he has no hope anywhere else.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    Davros,

    Christopher is probably right in that a few SDLP members may be crowding up behind O Donnell and Mc Grady but as stated by Derry T the dysfunctionalism of the SDLP is to the advantage of the current leadership line.
    The fiefdom strategy allowed to develop by the SDLP is now blowing up in its face. While there were strong personalities in the field it was successful, to an extent. The structural and organisational problems of the SDLP magnified once those personalities went.

    The SDLP are in organisational mayhem, the fact that they are having problems getting local government candidates (for seats they already hold) indicates a party badly in need of a re vamp.
    At this stage for the SDLP to even contemplate a u-turn on the inclusive nature of the GFA would be suicidal. Durkan if only from a sense of self preservation is well aware of this.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    Davros,

    Christopher is probably right in that a few SDLP members may be crowding up behind O Donnell and Mc Grady but as stated by Derry T the dysfunctionalism of the SDLP is to the advantage of the current leadership line.
    The fiefdom strategy allowed to develop by the SDLP is now blowing up in its face. While there were strong personalities in the field it was successful, to an extent. The structural and organisational problems of the SDLP magnified once those personalities went.

    The SDLP are in organisational mayhem, the fact that they are having problems getting local government candidates (for seats they already hold) indicates a party badly in need of a re vamp.
    At this stage for the SDLP to even contemplate a u-turn on the inclusive nature of the GFA would be suicidal. Durkan if only from a sense of self preservation is well aware of this.

  • Hector

    Posted by: vespasian at January 31, 2005 11:54 PM
    ‘The SDLP have always held the key to peace in Northern Ireland they could have decided to work closely with democratic unionists instead of trying to legitimise SF with the Pan Nationalist front’

    Where didn’t the SDLP work with unionists given the opportunity?

    Posted by: vespasian at February 1, 2005 11:20 AM
    The Northern Ireland Forum for Political Dialogue (known as “The Forum”) is one example.

    Any examples of places that really matter?

  • Billy Pilgrim

    Hector.

    “Any examples of places that really matter?”

    Sunningdale? Duisburg? The Brooke talks?

    Let’s be perfectly honest here. If the SDLP went into a voluntary coalition with unionism, they would be known forever hence in the nationalist community as the token taig party. The uncle Toms. The Castle Catholics. They would be seen by nationalists as what Malcolm X used to refer to as `house niggers’. Durkan would find himself presiding over a collapse of Redmondesque proportions.

    Unionism needs to realise that the nationalist community no longer labours under the psychological shackles of previous generations. Nationalists do not want their representatives to fit into what unionists consider acceptable, and talk of “gentrification” of nationalist representatives is taken as the slur it is.

  • Davros

    Durkan would find himself presiding over a collapse of Redmondesque proportions.

    He already IS presiding over a collapse of Redmondesque proportions Billy P. He doesn’t even have a wee Joe in his bag of tricks.So what’s to lose ?

    Nationalists do not want their representatives to fit into what unionists consider acceptable,

    isn’t that what is supposed to happen in this process ? Unionists and Nationalists MUST agree on what is MUTUALLY acceptable ?

  • Roger W. Christ XVII

    Stalford writes :

    “the failed policy of the Hume-era, i.e. taking the Provos by the hand and more latterly providing cover for them.”

    Except, Chris me old chum, every time someone reminds you of the fact that your party leader pioneered this concept you go all quiet.

  • slug9987

    “House niggers”

    There is a funny symmetry here. SF would go into coalition without the SDLP because it would annoy unionists. While SDLP can not go into such a coalition in case it would make unionists happy.

  • alex s

    Pat Mc Larnon, I am curious, if members of the IRA were convicted in court of the Northern Bank job and it was proved that the S/F leadership had knowledge would they still by virtue of their electoral mandate be entitled to a place in the Executive?