Independent Media Centre Ireland

Rossport Supporters rile Minister Dempsey in Glenties

category donegal | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Friday July 22, 2005 00:13author by Searc - Donegal Alternatives to Pylonsauthor email info at dun-na-ngall dot com

What a farce - Minister Dempsey appropiated the Proclamation of 1916, Shackelton the explorer, JFK, Oscar Wilde et al to support his treatise that the sons of destiny are visionaries!
He managed to waffle his way talking about the past instead of 'managing the future' as the MacGill Summer School is titled.
The Joe Mulholland, the chair, allowed him to frantically scribble notes while numerous people posed their questions - then the Minister just waffled a few replies and kept harking back to 1916 - as if the people in 1916 would have sold out the West!
Various speakers from Rossport posed questions which he didn't answer and the local Donegal people were disgusted at him talking about the gret economy we have when there is so much unemployment in Donegal and heckling ensued - at which point the chair was going to put an end to the proceedings - then Pearse Doherty pointed out that there are exploration licenses pending Donegal which should be rethought in the face
Garadai patrol Rossport Protest outside the Highlands Hotel Glenties 21/7/05
Garadai patrol Rossport Protest outside the Highlands Hotel Glenties 21/7/05

of oppositon to the Shell operation in Mayo -
Dempsey buried his head most of the time and kept his legs and arms folded, rocking in agitation at being questioned at all - the golden boy paled a few degrees.
The last word was left to Paul Durkan (yes the poet) who pointed out that most of the men and women of 1916 were poets and as a poet himself he asked that out 'sacred hills' be not draped in wind farms....
A much livlier and informative meeting took place in the Community Centre later in the evening and was well supported by the Greens, Sinn Fein and local environmental groups.

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author by via unison.iepublication date Fri Jul 22, 2005 13:20author address author phone


COMMUNICATIONS, Marine and Natural Resources Minister Noel Dempsey has insisted there will be no renegotiation of the lease between the Irish Government and Shell which has led to the controversial Shell Corrib gas pipeline.

At the MacGill Summer School in Glenties, Co Donegal, yesterday, the minister faced a hostile crowd who demanded that he take the steps necessary to secure the release of five men from the north Mayo village of Rossport who were jailed over their opposition to the onshore pipeline.

But the minister told the audience that any attempt to pull out or change a deal which had been negotiated and signed-off would result in the Government being sued and the tax-payer picking up the bill.

"When you negotiate something and sign-off on something, particularly as a State, and if you decide half-way through that you want to go back and change it, you get sued and the tax-payer ends up paying for it.

"So the question of renegotiating specifically the Shell lease is definitely not an option at this stage. You cannot change the existing leases but you can change the terms under which you operate into the future. It's as simple and straightforward as that," he said.

Mr Dempsey said he regretted that five men were in jail but he had done his best to come up with a solution to a situation that was not of his making. "I tried as best I could to offer a solution that would allow them to come out of jail but they haven't accepted that yet. That's their decision.

"The judge's decision was made because they were in contempt of court. If we decide that we are not going to accept the decisions of a court, we'd have chaos in the country and the Constitution wouldn't be much good to you then," he said.

Mr Dempsey faced heckling from the crowd, which included representatives from the Shell to Sea campaign, and at one point chairman and MacGill Summer School director Joe Mulholland threatened to pull the plug on proceedings.

"I am not going to have this forum hijacked," he said.

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author by Shell to Sea - N.Wpublication date Mon Jul 25, 2005 11:23author address author phone

Some pics from Donegal






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author by Shell to sea - N.Wpublication date Mon Jul 25, 2005 11:25author address author phone

Donegal alive!






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author by Shell to Seapublication date Mon Jul 25, 2005 11:26author address author phone



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author by mayomanpublication date Mon Jul 25, 2005 11:36author address author phone

Excellent idea to have the history of the sell-out laid out the way it is seen in the photos. Something that should be done on all protests I reckon.

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