Another Fermanagh Sinn Féin Councillor resigns

According to the BBC report, a Fermanagh Sinn Féin Councillor has defected to the Socialist Party, and resigned from the council.

Domhnall O Cobhthaigh is the third fourth Sinn Fein member of Fermanagh District Council to leave the party in the space of two years. He was co-opted to fill the seat left by Poilin Ui Cathain who quit in March 2007 over Sinn Fein’s decision to support the police.

Adds From the updated BBC report

[Domhnall O Cobhthaigh] described his decision to leave Sinn Fein as “very difficult” given the “many friends” he was leaving behind in Sinn Fein. However, he said that the current economic crisis had brought difficulties to the party because of the “contradiction between the nationalist and socialist agendas within Sinn Fein”. He said the party was following policies of cuts and privatisation which would only cement sectarianism.

And thanks to Paddy M in the comments zone, the statement in full at the Socialist Party website

[Domhnall O Cobhthaigh] added “Over the past year, I have come to understand that the Assembly system itself only reinforces the sectarian divisions within our society. “All five mainstream parties are doing little more than overseeing the long-term administration of senior civil servants and their right-wing agenda. “While I still have respect for many of my former colleagues within Sinn Fein, I cannot see how they will change this significantly in the context of the current framework of governance.”

And From the statement at the Socialist Party website

“I have decided to resign from Sinn Fein after a period of careful reflection. Over the past twelve years I have worked tirelessly to develop Sinn Féin as an engine of change. Leaving is a very difficult decision given the many friends I am leaving behind in the party.

“I consider that the current economic crisis has brought to antagonism the contradiction between the nationalist and socialist agendas within Sinn Féin. I have struggled for many years to promote the agenda of community empowerment and opposition to neo-liberal economics but realise that I cannot now usefully continue that within Sinn Féin. As a result I have decided to resign my party membership.”

Adds A reminder of where the party was in July.