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From The Newswire: The emergence of a number of independent republican candidates in this years northern council elections has highlighted a growing discontent within the traditional republican base vote which Sinn Fein could previously have taken for granted.
Although small in number, the fact that these independent candidates have emerged from within working class republican communities across the entire 6 counties, indicates that a growing number of republicans no longer feel that Sinn Fein articulate or represent their ideological beliefs, whether republican or socialist, and that this dissent exists across the entire occupied area.
It also appears that their decision to contest the elections and oppose Sinn Fein's stranglehold within the republican base has been spontaneous and not part of any organised electoral effort by any political grouping.
'I do wonder, however, if the racists who run websites, who make disgusting intimidating phone calls, who will not accept my right to have my election posters displayed publicly, are gaining encouragement from the government’s decision to run a racist referendum in conjunction with these elections'
Tokie Laotan, an independent candidate for the North / East ward in Galway city, has been facing harassment on the election trail. She has been receiving abusive anonymous phone calls to her mobile phone, she has been targeted by a racist website, and now her posters are being removed –-apparently in a systematic fashion.
‘I was reluctant to raise this publicly’, says Tokie Laotan, ‘because almost all of the Galway people I have met on my campaign have been friendly and open to what I have to say. Clearly, however, there are individuals who think that an African woman should not be allowed to even stand for election. All this harassment is making me nervous, and making it difficult for me to campaign effectively’.
Related Links and Stories on Immigrants, Elections and McDowell's Referendum
From the Newswire
Dear Sir or Madam,
Day after day they pop up in the Dail like Jack-In The Boxes with deviously amended 'press releases'..cleverly dressed up 'weasel words' to appease the anger of a gullible electorate. Bin taxes amended - 'more fair' etc (for now). Privatization ... but after the next election!
Charlie McCreevy has the brass balls (effrontery) to stand before the Dail and enunciate his alarm at the 100 million odd Euros cost of the various tribunals of enquiry into the corruption of his former associates and fellow T.D’s in government. If he and his comrades were honorable men they would resign from government and allow an emergency caretaker coalition of the lack-lustre opposition to at least try and redeem the nations dignity in this..our country’s darkest hour .
Stroke politics are pre-eminent. The people have been bought with their own money.
Liam Lawlor, and his like can sit there day after day like mocking court jesters,enjoying the expensive charade that they have summoned up to milk the decent taxpayers of this country dry over and over again.
We live in an age once more where as far as Politics is concerned - ‘The best have lost all hope, and the worst are filled with passionate intensity’.
John McDermott (RFFP), Ashtown, Dublin
With 250,000 members or 1 in 6 workers in ireland SIPTU is by far the largest irish trade union. SIPTU is currently electing it's vice president through a ballot of all members. It can be easily argued that as the official who sanctions strike action by the largest union in the state the new vice president will be one of the most powerful men in the country.
There are two candidates in the election, Brendan Hayes, a paid senior official of the union, and Des Derwin who is a factory worker and union activist. Hayes would support union policy on partnership while Derwin states: 'The unions should not be in partnership with the rich and powerful.' in an interview with 1 of IMC IRL conducted by email.
There has been excellent coverage of the elections for the Assembly and criticism of the lack of interest shown by IMC-IE contributors in this topic. This has been attributed variously to "southern myopia" or to "anarchist anti-electoralism." In the essay below, written by newswire contributor "hs - sp", the importance of elections is discussed.
With elections coming in the south and just after the elections in Northern Ireland there have been some comments on indymedia on the idea of standing in elections and voting itself. But there has not been a full debate on the subject alone. This is an important question for activists in all groups and parties, especially as more have taken an electoral strategy. We also expect to see anti-bin charge candidates. Although we should remember that this is not the only reason everyone is standing. Hopefully this can begin a debate on the subject without falling into name calling such as “reformist" or “ultra-left”.
I will begin with the preamble that I am writing from my own personal opinion and experiences and do not represent the views of the socialist party or anybody else (and if anybody feels I have misrepresented their position they are free to correct). And I will add I am also someone who has been living abroad for the last few years so won’t be up to date on every detail of every campaign or comment.
Sun 22 Sep, 11:45
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