“no mandate whatsoever..”

Northern Ireland deputy First Minister, and MP for Mid Ulster, Sinn Féin’s Martin McGuinness, was on the Politics Show today repeating the argument that dissenting republican paramilitary groups should stop their activities because they have “little or no support in the community” and “no mandate whatsoever”. Although, leaving aside the moral vacuity of his position, the recent CJINI report on community restorative justice schemes might suggest otherwise for some communities.. Martin McGuinness’ comments came ahead of his appearance at a parade in Londonderry to commemorate Provisional IRA members from the city who had died during their campaign of violence. The annual parade was held the day after the funeral of Emmett Shiels, who was murdered in the city on Tuesday morning – both of the men who had presented themselves to the police have now been released without charge. RTÉ tells us that Martin McGuinness also used the occasion to claim that “he had joined the paramilitary group [the IRA] in his youth and said it was then supported by the people.” [Must have missed that referendum.. – Ed]. Here’s the clip from the Politics Show, which also contains his comments on the outcome of the Robert McCartney murder trial. Adds UTV have the quote

Mr McGuinness told supporters at the republican commemoration: “When I joined the IRA in this city it was an army of the people – sustained by the people – supported by the people – and answerable to the people.”

And armed with the “people’s guns”, no doubt..