Sinn Fein have unveiled a memorial to the Hunger Strikers on Housing Executive owned land in Newtownbutler. A statement by The Housing Executive said that the monument had been erected: “without the agreement, involvement or knowledge of Housing Executive staff.” Erne East Sinn Fein Councillor Thomas O’Reilly said the majority of people in the Newtownbutler area want this memorial.
“This monument marks a show of respect for all those who died in the hunger strikes of 1981 and commemorates our late MP Bobby Sands who many people in South Fermanagh worked extremely hard to get elected. We all have to share communities and tolerate each others cultures and traditions and this memorial is a symbol of our history and is in no way meant to be intimidating or should be deemed offensive by anyone.”
He admitted that the party did not seek permission of Housing Executive and said “We have yet to do that” and added “We’ve had no objections”
Meanwhile also in Fermanagh Sinn Fein Erne East councillor Ruth Lynch has called for the removal of Union Flags at the edge of Lisbellaw: “These flags have been on display since before the July celebrations and are principally flying along the main road at Lisbellaw. They are not only extremely unsightly, especially at the height of the tourist season, they are offensive to a large number of people who regard them, rightly in my view, as sectarian and damaging to community relations. They were put up in the run up to the Twelfth, and we are now approaching October. Can we expect them to still be there by Christmas?”