All Irish citizens should have vote

Cllr Ronan McGinley
Cllr Ronan McGinley
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Nationalist controlled Mid Ulster Council has passed a motion calling for the right to vote in the next and all future Irish presidential elections.

Sinn Féin’s group leader Councillor Ronan McGinley proposed the motion at the monthly meeting after the Taoiseach refused to act on the recommendation made by the Constitutional Convention.

Sinn Féin argued that the franchise should be extended to include all Irish citizens, regardless of their place of residency.

“It is understandable that people had an expectation that a referendum would be held following the conventions recommendation,” he said.

“A lot of people have been looking forward to the day that they will be able to vote for their President. The Taoiseach’s decision not to hold a refendum is completely unacceptable.

“The people of the North and the Irish diaspora are part of this nation. They should be included in it, not excluded which is what is happening due to the Taiseach’s decision.”

SDLP Councillor Martin Kearney said his party supports the call to implement the recommendation, which council had previously discussed.

“Surely it is in a fundamental part of the Good Friday Agreement, the recognition by all the parties and the two governments that the population here could be British, Irish, Northern Irish or any combination thereof,” he said.