In a speech to his parliamentary party this afternoon Micheal Martin has added this tuppence worth on the current impasse:
The current crisis in Northern Ireland has in recent years been a slow-motion crash obvious to anyone paying attention. The two governments came to office and, without doing anything, hung up ‘Mission Accomplished’ banners and decided to leave everything to the DUP and Sinn Fein.
Those parties have presided over an ever more dysfunctional and ineffective set of institutions which have alienated the public and directly destabilised the first set of democratically legitimate institutions the North has ever had.
Sinn Fein has increasingly played sectarian politics and failed to acknowledge let alone address issues with the Provisional movement to which they belong. They can find people to expel when a TD is challenged at a convention but do nothing when child abuse, criminality and murder are exposed.
Fianna Fáil led the search for peace and delivered a series of historic breakthroughs for constitutional republicanism. The institutions must not be allowed to collapse and they must be rescued from the partisan and sectarian behaviour of the DUP and Sinn Fein.
There is also a huge potential for economic growth and service development in the Border region which is being wasted because of a neglectful Executive and disinterested governments. We intend putting the reinvigoration of the process of peace, reconciliation and development as a key part of our agenda for the next Dáil.