Liam Clarke in today’s Sunday Times discusses something that, if confirmed, considerably undermines the impact of Gerry Adams supposedly seismic call for Volunteers to leave the IRA and join Sinn Féin instead . According to the electoral commission, they have not been notified that one of the main suspects in the murder of Robert McCartney is no longer treasurer of Sinn Fein in the South and East Belfast constituencies for electoral purposes.
McCartney suspect was in Sinn Fein
THE family of Robert McCartney has asked Sinn Fein whether one of the main suspects in the murder of their brother was a party member at the time of the killing.
The name James McCormick is registered with the Northern Ireland Electoral Commission as the treasurer of Sinn Fein in the South and East Belfast constituencies for electoral purposes.
A prominent South Belfast republican called James McCormick has been named by the media as a suspect for McCartneys murder, and is one of two men the IRA offered to shoot in a conversation with the McCartney sisters.
Questioned by The Sunday Times, Sinn Fein replied: James McCormack (sic) is no longer a member of Sinn Fein. If you wish to interview McCormack you would therefore have to contact him directly.
Asked if the McCormick named as a Sinn Fein official on the Electoral Commission website and the murder suspect was the same person, a party spokesman replied: Yeah.
He said the names on the Electoral Commission website was a fairly old list but refused to say when McCormack had left the party or to make Alex Maskey, the Sinn Fein candidate in South Belfast, available for interview.
An Electoral Commission spokesman said that McCormick first registered as the treasurer for Sinn Fein South and East Belfast Accounting unit in 2003. He gave an address of 53 Falls Road, the Sinn Fein office in west Belfast.
Last month, following the international outcry over the McCartney murder, Sinn Fein paid a fee to the Electoral Commission and informed it that the position was unchanged. They were given until April 1 to notify the office of any changes and did not do so.
By law, Sinn Fein must inform the commission of resignations among office-holders no more than 28 days after they take place.
An Electoral Commission spokesman said It is the partys responsibility to inform us of any change.
The commission will now write to Margaret Adams, the overall treasurer of Sinn Fein for electoral purposes in Northern Ireland, to ask if McCormick is still treasurer for the constituencies and, if not, when the change took place.
Clarke goes on :
Catherine McCartney said: Up until now they told us that it was only IRA members who were involved around the scene of the murder. Now, if this is true, it seems to me that there were more Sinn Fein party members than IRA members involved.
The people suspected of murdering Robert all seem to be Sinn Fein members, so the party cant get away with saying, It was a few individuals, nothing to do with us.