“There is a bit of a split in the camp over it”

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams has denied reports of dissent in the party being imposed as a candidate in Louth following his sudden decision to leave west Belfast, and the UK, in a bid to hold onto the Dáil seat to be vacated by Arthur Morgan.  He’s telling anyone who will listen that

“The idea for me to stand . . . came from within the constituency. If you elbow yourself in somewhere you create havoc and it doesn’t help the party.”


In the Belfast Telegraph local Sinn Féin Cllr Tomas Sharkey, who had been tipped as Arthur Morgan’s “natural successor”, was positively gushing

“There’s no personal interest in this. This is everything I’ve ever dreamed of growing up and looking at politics. This is a fantastic move,” [Cllr Sharkey] said.

But the Herald, who as Mark noted had the story days before anyone else, also reported yesterday

Informed sources have also revealed how Mr Adams’ first task will be to try to unite party members who are split over his surprise decision.

Local Cllr Tomas Sharkey was seen as the “natural successor” to incumbent TD Arthur Morgan who announced last week that he would not seek re-election. “There is a bit of a split in the camp over it,” a source told the Herald.

“There was even reluctance to announce Arthur Morgan’s resignation in case it would spark speculation. There could be war in the camp.”

Cllr Sharkey told the Herald last week that he had known about Deputy Morgan’s intentions for “some time” but refused to be drawn on speculation that Adams could run in his place.

And in the News Letter, a somewhat mischievous Liam Clarke wonders whether the Northern Ireland First and deputy First Ministers are “glad to see the back of Adams?”

Adds  Edit in response to Rory’s concerns in the comment zone.