Ogra SF comes out against recognising PSNI…

It’s hard to know just what this augers for the Sinn Fein consultation, but the answer from Eugene Garvey of Ogra Sinn Fein is unambiguous:

“If our generation now endorses the wearing of the RUC/psni uniform under the Saint Andrews agreement, we will be endorsing and accepting the British occupation of Ireland .”

Rejectionist Republicanism anyone?

  • sam

    Certainly places the contrived concerns of some of the cranks within unionism in perspective

  • seabhac siulach

    This suggests that the selling of the PSNI in any special Ard Fheis might not be the formality that certain commentators assume (at least unless policing powers are quickly devolved). Then again, it would appear to be just a personal opinion of his. I do not think he is speaking for the whole of Ogra Shinn Fein (is he?). Approval of the PSNI was never going to win 100% percent approval, in any case. There is too much historical baggage…
    I suppose that is the problem with the whole peace process, it involves compromises that are never easily accepted by the young, who seek more radical black or white solutions…
    What will happen to these erstwhile ‘young turk’ revolutionaries when Sinn Fein is just another (slightly) constitutional party?

  • Mick

    Ogra has come out against the RUC/PSNI at the last couple of Ard Fheis. I would be surprised if Ogra signed up to the St Andrews agreement however one mans views are not indicative of an entire groups feelings. The post below Eugene’s on Ogra’s blog calls for a time of debate.

    That said to call them Rejectionist Republicans is just nonsense. It is the Republican youth who will be asked to join any new police service. Their support is paramount if we are to have a new beginning to policing.

  • Carson’s Cat

    ss
    “This suggests that the selling of the PSNI in any special Ard Fheis might not be the formality that certain commentators assume (at least unless policing powers are quickly devolved)”

    The control of devolution of policing & justice lies with unionism – has to be proposed by the FM and DFM as well as being passed by a cross-community majority. I dont believe anyone within unionism has believed in setting a date (well apart from the deal done by the UUP a few years back which set one – but we’ll ignore that as they appear to have changed their stance now).

    Chris
    It may not be indicative of the views of the whole organisation but it is posted on the ‘official’ site. This fella does seem to be reasonably senior within the OSF organisation also. You however have pointed out that he seems to reflect the view of a majority of their members. Therefore its not inaccurate to say that OSF are institutionally opposed to this.

    I dont particularly see the problem with the ‘rejectionist republican’ tag. They are opposed to progress being made as that progress requires support for the police. We cant help the fact that you dont like being tagged as ‘rejectionist’ but that doesnt change the facts.

    Lets hope the rejectionists are faced down by their leadership. Its courage we need in these days!!

  • Mick

    It was mostly intended as a slight tease Chris. All of these terms are relative. However there is also a serious proposition behnd it.

    Eugene’s position is interesting and well argued (there’s only one ‘l’ in that Holywood though). It’s also one that only just skims in under the loose terms of the Belfast Agreement.

    A question I raised on previous thread might be re-voicing in this context: can rejection of a single police force under UK auspices also be read as a rejection of the ‘consent principle’ on sovereignty as laid out in that Agreement?

  • We cant help the fact that you dont like being tagged as ‘rejectionist’

    I am not been tagged as a rejectionist, I am not a member of Ogra.

    can rejection of a single police force under UK

    You don’t have that though Mick, you have never had that so your question is bogus.

  • Carson’s Cat

    Chris,
    Ok – you’re not a member of Ogra, but you’ve made clear your opposition. The tag of ‘rejectionist’ is not placed upon you because of this article but still ends up in the same place nevertheless.

    What is clear is that you dont like the tag, either being placed on you or on the OSF organisation. However, that doesnt change the facts that you’re saying “never never never” which are the actual words used at the end of this article.

    I suppose the alternative tag, given that opposition to the SF ‘party line’ is being epxressed, is “dissident republican”.

  • seabhac siulach

    “I suppose the alternative tag, given that opposition to the SF ‘party line’ is being epxressed, is “dissident republican”.”

    Or better still, perhaps Ogra Shinn Fein should now be described as a ‘micro-organisation’…

  • Ok – you’re not a member of Ogra, but you’ve made clear your opposition. The tag of ‘rejectionist’ is not placed upon you because of this article but still ends up in the same place nevertheless.

    How so?

    that doesnt change the facts that you’re saying “never never never”

    That is not what I am saying at all. I am simply saying that the changes have not went far enough. I am not saying that I would never sign up to a police service.

    That said I am sure your find it easier to refer to me as a rejectionist so knock yourself out.

  • SS

    Ogra are an integral part of the Republican movement, they are entitled to their views!

  • DK

    Sounds like Eugene is simply putting the police in a box – all they do is uphold the status quo and as a republican he is against this. But is that what the police are really all about?

    I was driving to work this morning and there was an ambulance dealing with an accident, the PSNI were re-routing cars. The day before I saw one with a speed camera. Ogra need to get their minds out of the past and see that the police are really not very interested in them or the status quo, they are more interested in meeting targets on crime reduction and, in the case of speed cameras, revenue generation.

    MI5 is a different issue – can’t Ogra accept the PSNI but oppose MI5, a slightly more realistic objective for an anti-British organisation.

  • seabhac siulach

    “Ogra are an integral part of the Republican movement, they are entitled to their views!”

    Yes, I know and accept that…merely having a laugh regarding the term ‘micro-organisations’…
    Some of the views held by these ‘micro-organisations’ would appear, however, to not be that far from those espoused by Mr. Garvey…
    For example, “If our generation now endorses the wearing of the RUC/psni uniform under the Saint Andrews agreement, we will be endorsing and accepting the British occupation of Ireland .”
    Could have come straight from a Saoirse front page…

    It raise the question about what happens to those views, when, as seems likely, the bulk of Sinn Fein proper outvote the ‘youth’ regarding policing.
    You mention that Ogra Shinn Fein have come out against the RUC/PSNI at the last couple of Ard Fheis(eanna). Yes, but then it was merely theoretical, now it will be for real. What place in a party for the ‘revolutionary’ young turks forced to accept the compromises foisted on them by the, eh, less youthful leadership?

  • heres hoping

    i dont think its the time or the place for a debate on wether republicans are rejections or otherwise on this issue as the debate is yet to get started, the leadership have yet to put a position to the membership and by listening we have a bit to go yet before SF call a AF on policing. So cool it, have the mature discussion with all the facts and dates presented and then its time to reject or accept. Its all to play for and I’m sure the DUP, UUP, SDLP, FF, FG, Labour and others would love for republicans to start gutting each other before the debate even happens. OSF are quite entitled to their position as are those who believe its time move.

    My own view on all of this is lets see the proposals from the leadership and measure them against the AF position of last year and it has to be remembered that in negotiations you don’t always get what you want.

  • George

    How about PSNI officers making an oath to uphold the consent principle and accept a united Ireland if a majority vote in favour?

    Then they will be in the same holding pattern as Gerry Adams himself and can get on with their jobs, the same jobs they would be doing in a united Ireland anyway.

    Take DK’s advice and oppose MI5.

  • Crataegus

    DK

    The point you make about the PSNI and MI5 is a good one.

    This issue, illustrates the problem with this process, everything is seen as a series of compromises and of giving ground. It is all presented as negative when in reality it is an opportunity for a new and prosperous future in peace with each other. That’s the aim. Can we not bury the hatchets and enter into the process with a will to make it work? Give it 10-15 years and reassess.

    We all need an effective police force supported by all and we need its short comings addressed. The PSNI is there and what exactly is the alternative? I say this as someone who is far from impressed with the PSNI and the issues surrounding collusion and political stunts. There really isn’t an alternative.

  • marty

    we will be endorsing and accepting the British occupation of Ireland .”

    Didn’t this already happnened when the GFA was voted in?

  • marty

    bah – apologies for the above spelling

  • mickhall

    You cannot separate MI5 and the PSNI, for when MI5 decide you are a threat against the State, it will be the PSNI who come and kick down your door. Thus the whole law and order thing is linked.

  • Kathy_C

    posted by Kathy C

    Hi all,

    I’m glad to see the courage of Eugene Garvey to say what he did. I agree with him. What I find ever so interesting IF anyone disagrees with the approach of Adams-one is branded a rejectionist republican. There is always talk in republican circles that what is needed is leadership…leadership to take chances…leadership to do what is needed….and what has the leadership of adams recently gotten the movement….trying to sell the idea that republicans should join the ruc/psni and wear the uniform of the british crown …and by doin so endorses the british crown and it’s rule of law which states Catholics are lesser subjects than all others. Oh how paisly must be laughing. Oh how thatcher must be laughing, oh how mi5 and mi6 must be laughing. They have adams doing their bidding and have adams breaking down the republican movement all in the guise of leadership and peace.

  • Bren

    As they always say the devil is in the detail, and one gem that is contained in the St Andrews agreement is the following change:

    Appointment of Ministers in the Executive. An amendment would be made to the
    1998 Act on appointment of Ministers in the Executive. The Nominating Officer of the largest party in the largest designation in the Assembly shall make a nomination to the Assembly Presiding Officer for the post of First Minister. The Nominating Officer of the largest party in the second largest designation in the Assembly shall similarly nominate for the post of Deputy First Minister.

    In the past it was just the largest party and designation had nothing to do with nominations, what this change means effectively is even if Sinn Féin or the SDLP ever overtake the DUP and become the largest party as long as Unionism is in the majority they will maintain the post of First Minister. This is a totally undemocratic change and I don’t think anybody either in Sinn Féin or even the stoops could support this change – what do others think?

  • Bushmills

    I think Alex Kane should come on this thread and take a look at the tangle republicans have gotten themselves into over the issue of policing.

    Paisley has taken them for a ride: it is clear that they are going to have difficulties delivering on this and there will be lots of internal opposition (My G-d, it’s great to see the shoe on the other foot for a change!).

    Bearing this in mind, the last thing that Unionists should do is heed calls to walk away from this – Sinn Fein are desperate for a get-out clause, it is essential that they are not given one.

  • bootman

    Bearing this in mind, the last thing that Unionists should do is heed calls to walk away from this – Sinn Fein are desperate for a get-out clause, it is essential that they are not given one

    Bushmills

    And vice-versa…..

  • Yokel

    Calm down.

    1. Terminlogy..try ‘harder line voices within Sinn Fein’. Such people as our Ogra Sinn Fein posting friend are still firmly under the Sinn Fein umbrella. Parties can have wings and differnces ya know.

    2. It makes sense for Sinn Fein to have a hard line element and to let them talk. Not least Sinn Fein can always use the ‘difficulty’ line try to wangle some more concessions though I’m not sure the governments are going to give them much around the core issue of policing, there may be other areas.

    3. Some people were nevere going to like it, the question is can Sinn Fein take the largest part of the party and its friends on the paramilitary side with them.

    4. The DUP will have their refusniks as well.

  • Quaysider

    SF will have more credibility if it falls out with the Ogra. They are a strange bunch altogether, a really bizarre mix of far-right nationalism and far-left everything else that just doesn’t work or appeal or chime with any normal young person.
    Besides, there only are about 12 of them.

  • interested

    Yokel
    “Terminology”

    Yes there will be differing voices, but listen to what this one is saying.

    They’re quite definite in this case. Its not that policing has to be made acceptable – its that he/they will never accept policing under any circumstances.

    There is also an issue that it might be useful for them to have the ‘hardliners’ to extract concessions. However, the leadership has said repeatedly that “there are no deal breakers”. You do say that the DUP will have its refusniks as well – quite possibly, but they are actually in a much better position to extract concessions in order to placate the ‘hardliners’. They’re the party who are stating that they need issues sorted out – there are dealbreakers out there and therefore those need to be sorted. SF have more or less stated that they need nothing more.

  • Yokel

    George matey, the idea is that politics is taken out of the cops as much as possible, lets not add anymore.

    Such a pledge makes no sense anyway since the day a majority in Northern Ireland vote for unification with Ireland they wil cease to exist as the PSNI.

    People, always manouvering….

  • topdeckomnibus

    The power to appoint constables resides with the parishes. The power used by government to appoint police is on loan by default of the parishes to hold elections and vote in their own police.

    In England, mindful that Maggie Thatcher really set the trend for unlawful policing, there are murmurings that parishes should re-introduce elections and thus stop the selection of police by Home Office positive discrimination directives.

    Police then would only be able to recruit from those elected to the Office of Constable (not to be confused with the rank of constable)

  • Yokel

    Interested.

    May be so, but the idea that Sinn Fein would stay completely together on this is just not realistic.

    You have got to remember that much of this youth wing haven’t cut their teeth on much because most of them were in short pants around the time of the ceasfires and before that things where not as hectic as they were in the likes of the early 80s and before. It’s easy to be a hardliner when you haven’t faced off 30 years of shite.

    Maybe Paisley does have the Shinners swinging by the balls on this but its unlikely that the bulk of the movement won’t go with the Sinn Fein leadership. That is all that matters and thats all it needs to keep things on track.

    Those witihin Sinn Fein currently who oppose it have a few choices:

    1. Stay within the Sinn Fein – some will do that
    2. Leave and go to some more hardline but political (rather than armed political) grouping or form their own-some will do that
    3. Go into physical force republicanism again, set up or join u with an existing mob-sme will do that
    4. Just walk away and not get involved in an organised movement fo any type.

    Bear in mind the refusniks are likely to be a minority. Some will stay within Sinn Fein where they will harder line voices but without much influence for the forseeable future. Thus that leaves us with an even smaller minority who may leave Sinn Fein. Of that group some will move into another political side group only and some will move into the politics and guns sphere and some may just give up active political involvement.

    Dangerous? Probably but this place will always have have those on both sides who think shooting, blowing things up and causing riots on the streets is the way. What matters is not trying to make them not exist because some always will, its wheher they can be pretty much neutered as a violent threat. As I pointed on on an earlier thread, its obvious that such people will exist and I’s be surprised if the governments are not preparing for it.

  • George

    Yokel,
    it was written slightly tongue in cheek as everyone else in this God forsaken process seems to be making oaths or signing pledges rather than getting on and doing something. So why not the police?

    The majority of people in Northern Ireland have no other experience apart from direct rule and I wouldn’t be surprised if the majority of their representatives were actually afraid of the future.

  • Yokel

    Holy jesus, I missed the joke…bollocks.

    George they are worried? So am I at having them in power up in Stormont…

  • Yokel

    What beats me is that in the midst of all this bollocks, we have a convicted child sex offender roaming around in the South after absconding from the North.

    Whats going on there?

  • interested

    Yokel
    “its unlikely that the bulk of the movement won’t go with the Sinn Fein leadership. That is all that matters and thats all it needs to keep things on track.”

    I actually dont disagree with you that the SF leadership will ultimately carry the day. I agree that parties can have differences and even wings – however this statement left absolutely no wriggle room. They seem totally opposed to any possibility of accepting policing, under any circumstances.

    For this to come from within SF is all the more surprising given that SF isn’t exactly known for having its internal debates in public and may highlight even more the difficulties they’re having on this issue. I believe policing is a very significant issue for them and that’s why I believe it is an issue unionists needed to focus on and was necessary. That’s why ultimately a victory for the leadership on this issue should send out a real signal – more than just tokenism.

  • George

    Yokel,
    “What beats me is that in the midst of all this bollocks, we have a convicted child sex offender roaming around in the South after absconding from the North.”

    No extradition request has been made by the PSNI for sex offender Paul Redpath so there is nothing the Gardai can do. The DUP showed their deep understanding of the British and Irish legal systems by criticising the Gardai for failing to arrest him and are demanding that he be sent back irrespective of the “regime” in place in the Republic. I suppose by regime they mean the right to due process.
    You couldn’t make it up. And these bozos think they could and should run the Justice portfolio in Northern Ireland? I’m afraid too and I don’t even live there. But we digress from the policing point.

  • heck

    Good man Chris—I knew republicans would have difficulty signing up for this oath crap.

    The idea that the PSNI/UVF in their present form would win the wholehearted backing of the nationalist community is fatuous nonsense.

    For me to accept the PSNI there must first be a complete accounting of the collusion activities of the RUC and the naming and shaming those senior officers and administrators involved; there must be an international and transparent investigation of the interrogation and shoot to kill policies of the RUC; there must be structures in place to ensure such things never happen again; and there must be an end to political policing and the removal of MI5 from any role in policing NI. Republicans have done time, some for years, naked and in filth, for their part in the war. The naming of the state actors for their role is a small price to pay.

    The whole justice system must be overhauled. I would like to see transparency in the activities of the prosecution service with an end to this “public interest” shite when government employees are involved in crimes up to and including murder. Make the prosecution service answerable to elected NI representatives. (In the United States the local DA, the head of the prosecution service, is an elected office).

    There needs to be an overall of the judiciary. Judges in Britain are part of the ruling elite. There is no one of the stature of Justice Marshall who sat on the US supreme court and saw it as his role to protect the little guy against the state. In Britain judges protect the state against the little guy. Perhaps a joint British/NI/Irish panel to appoint judges would be a start.

    Chris—the fighting men from Crossmaglen never let us down. Don’t you tarnish the reputation of South Armagh.

  • Yokel

    Thank you george, though jesus relax on the political point scoring, no one listens to Ian Scrappy Doo Paisley Jnr anyway. The kid is busted flush and has been for years.

    Maybe the PSNI don’t care, I suppose…off their territory.

    Quiet life stuff. I do know Dermot Ahern is not happy about it though.

  • lib2016

    The Southern government is already making noises about making up the shortfall in funding for the new (Northern) police college and making an agreement that both police services on this island shoud be trained there.

    We’re in for years of negotiation on this and many other topics – the total population of Northern Island wouldn’t fill a good sized city in Britain and the South is no giant either.

    Resources need to be developed and used on an economic basis and where that happens to be on all-Ireland basis then let it be so. The DUP want the benefits of such measures to be verified by a multi-party political committee which is a reasonable demand.

    Many countries use other’s military training resources, and globally we all share third level education facilities. Why should policing be so different?

    Ogra SF are jumping too soon – Kelly has already said that more needs to be put on the table for policing to become a done deal.

  • Yokel

    Heck, if in the process of all this accountability senior members of the republican movement are shown to be involved in some kind of collusion with the forces of the State, what then?

    Some were (some got caught, some are still in place and some got retired) and the chances are there’s plenty we don’t know about. Want to shine a light on it? No thanks.

    Sinn Fein will vote agreement through on policing, because they have to.

    The fighting men of Crossmaglen may not have let you down but clearly someone has because most of them are not shooting at anyone in a British uniform these days. Why? Who decided they should stop?

  • páid

    A few points.

    A convicted sex offender from NI should be monitored in the Republic.
    And vice versa.
    And in Britain.

    The RIC did not, at the end of the day, unduly influence political changes. A revolutionary national movement grew under it’s watch. Policing is important but the police reflect societies rather than influence them.

    An legal Irish name for the PSNI, would sugar the pill.

  • George

    Yokel,
    “relax on the political point scoring, no one listens to Ian Scrappy Doo Paisley Jnr anyway. The kid is busted flush and has been for years.”

    Not when it’s as easy as this. After all, Ian Paisley Jr. is the justice spokesman for the DUP so I would assume he is the man they would nominate to be in charge of the Justice portfolio. He’s their number one batsman on this issue and he doesn’t even understand the meaning of due process?

  • heck

    Yokel,

    Do I want information about senior republican collusion with British intelligence out in the open? You’re damn right I do. (to paraphrase Col Nathan Jessop ,jack Nicholson, in “A few good men” , I want the truth, I can handle the truth!!!)

    Let’s get it all out in the open, government collusion with loyalist death squads, republican collusion with the brits (if any), DUP collusion with loyalist paramilitaries, PSNI/UVF joint operations., DPP cover ups, journalist collusion with intelligence agencies, all of it. Then we can make informed decisions.

    I am from Belfast but I recognize that it is the boys and girls from South Armagh, south Derry and Co Tyrone who will keep the republican dream alive. Keep up the good fight Gaskin.

  • willowfield

    “If our generation now endorses the wearing of the RUC/psni uniform under the Saint Andrews agreement, we will be endorsing and accepting the British occupation of Ireland .”

    This quotation shows just how out of touch these people are with contemporary society.

    “Ogra” Sinn Féin need to relax, get out more and enjoy themselves. Maybe do a bit of travelling. Meet people.

    It will be a tragedy if such people end up preventing political progress in Northern Ireland.

  • marty

    the fighting men from Crossmaglen never let us down

    Christ, pass the NORAID bucket i need to be sick.

    Fighting men? Haven’t you heard heck? It’s better to talk…

  • Yokel

    Heck..really whoever pokes a stick in that nest may well need to use a 30 foot pole.

  • Yokel

    George….I doubt it. He may be justice spokesman now but if it comes to a justice ministry locally others in the DUP will get in ahead of him, assuming they have first call on it which I assume they will.

  • “The fighting men of Crossmaglen may not have let you down but clearly someone has because most of them are not shooting at anyone in a British uniform these days.”

    Most of them never did shoot at anyone in a British uniform. And besides, you’d need to look more at the surrounding area than Cross itself to find provo zealotry.

  • Cato

    The Young Unionists were a thorn in the side of David Trimble as he tried his best to make the Good Friday Agreement work despite the background machinations of Sinn Fein. It would be pleasurably ironic if Ógra Sinn Fein prove to be similar irritant to the Republican leadership less than a decade on.

  • Arthur Morgan

    Is recent history repeating itself here. Ironic that Eugene Garvey is the Dundalk representive with Ogra Sinn Fein. He is associated with the so called hardline elements of Sinn Fein in Dundalk where the talk is of resignations if the RUC is endorsed. This situation is very very similar to the resignations that occured in Dundalk as a result of endorsing the Mitchell Principals. Interesting times ahead I say, interesting times ahead.

  • Arthur Morgan

    Mitchell Principles even …. sorry.

  • aquifer

    Develop a reformed accountable police service representative of the community and irish ‘republicans’ give it, well, the fingers.

    What have they in mind that co-operation with the police might constrain?

    Leafletting, public meetings, policy conferences, loud music?

  • Develop a reformed accountable police service representative of the community

    Do that and you will find most Irish Republicans quite willing to support it.

  • exuup

    Let’s get it all out in the open, government collusion with loyalist death squads, republican collusion with the brits (if any), DUP collusion with loyalist paramilitaries, PSNI/UVF joint operations., DPP cover ups, journalist collusion with intelligence agencies, all of it. Then we can make informed decisions. —

    funny how you didnt mention SF/SDLP/Catholic RuC men collusion with the IRA

    Yeah lets get it ALLLL out in the open

  • heck

    exuup

    if you think that happened then let’s get that out in the open also. Let’s get it ALL out and then make informed decisions.

    Chris Gaskin

    I agree with you. Republicans should spell out what they want before endorsing the police and then stand their ground. And none of this oath crap!! If someone tried to make an African American take an oath to support the alabama sheriff before he could hold office they would rightly be laughed at.

    I would hope that even the SDLP on the police boards do not support the PSNI/UVF as is and are trying to achieve change from inside.

    The whole concept of an oath to support the PSNI/UVF is offensive and patronizing.

  • ingram

    Heck,

    Defeated Armies dont dictate terms they surrender, decommission and swear oaths of loyalty and obedience to their masters.

    Any problem with that? then take it up with Adams and McGuinness the long term strategy partners. LOL

    One day the penny will drop.

    Marty.