The Sunday Tribune follows up on last week’s photographs of Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams canvassing with his brother Liam in Dundalk in June 1997 with more photographic evidence of Liam Adams’ involvement in the Sinn Féin party structures. Contrary to what Louth Sinn Féin TD Arthur Morgan has said – “Although [Liam Adams] was a party member, he was never an officer”, “He was not on the richter scale at all.” – accompanying Martin McGuinness as he opened the new Dundalk Sinn Féin office in June 1996, Liam Adams is described in Dundalk’s The Argus at the time [7th June 1996] as “Chairman of Louth Comhairle Ceantair”. The Tribune also reports that five months after the June 1997 Dundalk canvass with Gerry Adams, “Liam Adams chaired the Edentubber Martyrs’ [40th anniversary] commemoration in Co Louth attended by 1000 republicans on 9 November 1997. He introduced the main speaker, Sinn Féin national chairman, Mitchel McLaughlin. The event was reported in The Dundalk Democrat.” Here’s The Argus photograph from 7th June 1996. Adds Sunday Tribune front page article.
Inside the Sunday Tribune, Suzanne Breen writes [added link]
Sinn Féin’s claim to the Irish Times on 28 December that there was nothing contradictory about our photographs and Gerry Adams’ publicly-stated position on his brother is nonsensical.
On 21 December, Gerry Adams had told RTE: “When I heard Liam was in Sinn Féin, and when I heard somebody was putting it about that perhaps he would be a candidate, I moved immediately both to stop that and get him dumped out of Sinn Féin… I moved very, very quickly. He wasn’t a contender. there was no nomination by Liam Adams in the Dundalk area. There was no convention in which his name was put forward.”
Yet on 5 October 1996 – eight months before the canvass – the Dundalk Democrat reported that a selection convention would be held later that month in the Imperial Hotel. It named Owenie Hanratty and Liam Adams as those seeking the nomination.
Contrary to Sinn Féin claims, the convention took place. The Sunday Tribune has statements from republicans present. But not only was Gerry Adams canvassing with Liam eight months after his brother’s name was first publicly mentioned in connection with the nomination, Liam Adams remained a prominent Sinn Féin member afterwards.
The Dundalk Democrat of 15 November 1997 – five months after the infamous canvass – states that Sinn Féin member Liam Adams played a prominent role in the Edentubber 40th anniversary commemoration, just outside Dundalk, to honour five IRA members killed in the border campaign.
“Proceedings were chaired by Liam Adams of Sinn Féin in Co Louth. The main address was given by Sinn Féin national chairman, Mitchel McLaughlin,” the Dundalk Democrat states, The commemoration had taken place six days earlier.
The proven details of Liam Adams’ Sinn Féin activity also totally contradict the party spokesman’s claim in the Irish Independent last Monday.
“Liam was expelled after the election and as soon as Gerry realised he was in the party he took measures to remove him,” the spokesman said.
And there are still those other questions about events post-1998.