“When you’re a political party you have to act like a political party…”

Fianna Fáil may have their own problems at the moment but, before Sinn Féin showed its hand on the presential election, Fianna Fáil party leader Micheál Martin was telling some home truths about the performance of the Northern Ireland Executive.

The former Minister for Foreign Affairs said he had first hand experience of how poorly Sinn Fein had performed in the Northern Ireland Executive.

He said: “Just look at Sinn Fein’s performance in government in Northern Ireland, it’s been pretty poor in terms of their executive responsibilities.

“The Northern Ireland Executive, unfortunately, had been dysfunctional for too long because of the quality of the input of parties like Sinn Fein.

“I had experience of this as Foreign Affairs Minister, when I was involved in devolution of justice, for example.

“When you’re a political party you have to act like a political party. It’s not just about winning seats and numbers.”

That dysfunctionality hasn’t gone away, you know…

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  • Martin is missing the point about the Shinmnners and Stormont. The fact of gerry going to Louth and nowsending Marty to try for the Aras, shows they don’t take Stormont seriously as a government because they know that both them and the DUP are there to be there for it’s own sake, and governance isn’t the raison d’etre of devolved power in NI.

  • sherdy

    Micheal Martin certainly knows a thing or two about dysfunctionality! About the only subject on which he can claim any success.

  • keano10

    Laugh out loud.

    Fianna Fail giving lectures about how a party should act??

    Like them he means? Lying, embezzling, dirty deals ad infinitum…?

    They really are terrified of The Shinners now arent they…?

  • It is only to be expected from a one issue organisation that comes in from the cold and tries to hide its fascist core, i.e. a ragbag of contradictory policies most of which are liberal wish lists but occasionally conservative eg the support for reductions in corporation tax.

    And for a while, SF have been aping DUP and confusing electioneering and elections with democracy and delivery.

    You don’t have to be a political pundit to criticise Executive performance in the Assembly.

  • Coll Ciotach

    This is stating the obvious but I cannot stop myself. Why not give us the benefit of FFwisdom – run candidates for Stormont- FF have threatened often enough to come north what is stopping them.

  • Dec


    Some context behind what prompted Micheál might be useful lest anyone think this is just another example of Fianna Fail’s noblesse oblige.

    The fact that Micheál fails to provide any examples or evidence of SF’s ‘poor performance’ would tend to suggest that this is nothing other than a desperate rearguard attempt at party politicing. As some others have suggested, the notion that FF would describe another party’s performance in government as ‘poor’ would be hilarious if it wasn’t so insulting. I look forward to SF wiping them off the Irish electoral landscape over the next couple of years.

  • aquifer

    Maybe you do not have to be very good at governance to be in government? Getting votes could be simpler than running the place competently.

    So what is the antidote?

    Some extra transparency might reveal the advice the ministers received and ignored. What is the justification for keeping state papers secret for a generation rather than one electoral cycle?

    Screwing up for four or five years is probably fine when government is a smaller part of the economy, but to let people keep doing it again and again has proven suicidal for the Republic.

  • granni trixie

    So far questions about MMG have been of a moral nature. This may have obscured SF policy/attitude to the EU. (they dont like it basically,didnt want to let newcomers in,didnt want to take a loan etc) . Would this be a selling point or a turn off to voters in the South?

  • Neil

    For context allow me to expand the quote above:

    Mr Martin was responding to weekend comments made by Northern Ireland’s Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness when he said Sinn Fein is aiming to overtake Fianna Fail electorally.

    But Mr Martin angrily slammed Sinn Fein’s performance in the Northern Ireland Executive as “dysfunctional” and said he isn’t concerned.

    Ah, so he’s pissed (actually, angry) at the idea of the once great party which has destroyed Ireland and is now looking at coming third to the party they have denigrated and laughed at for years.

    He said: “Fianna Fail’s focus is on the people of Ireland, it’s not playing political games.

    “I don’t look over my shoulder. We as a political party exist to develop policies, programmes and core values that can be of value to the Irish people.

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha. Sorry, LOL doesn’t cover it.

  • I’m hearing that ‘FF meeting has broken up and the party has decided not to nominate any candidate for president’.

    “The Fianna Fáil parliamentary party has decided that the party will not support any candidate in the Presidential election.
    At a meeting this morning, the motion was put by party leader Micheál Martin and seconded by deputy leader Éamon Ó Cuív.
    Earlier, Fianna Fáil senator Labhrás Ó Murchú withdrew his name as a prospective Presidential candidate.” .. RTE source

  • Neil

    That’s one way to avoid failure and embarrasment. The loser’s way.