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MacManus steps down as Sinn Féin seek new General Election Candidate

Sinn Féin Councillor Sean MacManus has announced that after long
deliberation he has decided not to seek his party’s nomination for the
forthcoming general election. Speaking today Councillor MacManus said that
he had reached his decision despite widespread urging from both public and
party members for him to allow his name to go forward again.

“Over the past number of months I have been asked by many people as to my
intentions in relation to contesting the next general election. Both Sinn
Féin activists and members of the public have repeatedly encouraged me to
let my name go forward again as a candidate due to the increased potential
of Sinn Féin taking a seat here.

I have given this matter a lot of thought over a lengthy period and I have
now come to the conclusion that after having contested a number of general
elections for Sinn Féin it is time to pass on the baton to someone else.”

“This has of course been a difficult decision for me to make. I am humbled
to have been the most public face of Sinn Féin in Sligo and Leitrim for a
considerable number of years, particularly since the death of the former
Sinn Féin TD John Joe McGirl.

As a life-long republican activist I am extremely proud of having been
involved at a senior level in many events which impacted on this region. In
particular I take satisfaction from my role in working on the Northern peace
process and seeing all the positive benefits that have accrued to our
country from it. Being twice Mayor of Sligo was a fantastic experience for
me and is also a source of quiet satisfaction.”

“It is however my feeling that I have assisted in bringing Sinn Féin as far
as I possibly can during my time of contesting general elections over the
past twenty years. When I first ran in Sligo/Leitrim in 1989 Sinn Fein was a
relatively small party striving to provide a real alternative to the
establishment parties.

Over the subsequent general elections we have seen our share of the vote
increase over four-fold and put us in a position where we are now the third
largest party in this constituency after Fianna Fail and Fine Gael. For that
progress I now want to sincerely thank the thousands of people who have
voted for me in those general elections. We are nothing without the support
of the people.”

“I have being a long time involved in politics during which I have committed
much of my adult life in trying to build Sinn Féin and in particular to
making our message of national unity and building a fairer society more
central to Irish political life. As result, and to my deep regret, during
those years my family often came second to politics.”

“I would now like to use whatever liberty this decision gives me to
concentrate my energies on continuing to being a committed community
activist and councillor.

Soon Sinn Féin will be selecting a new general election candidate, I want to
take this opportunity to assure whoever he or she is that they will have my
full and active support in winning a seat here. I want also to call on all
those who supported me to now continue that support for this new candidate.”

“It has been an honour to have had the confidence of my party as a general
election candidate for twenty years. It is my clear intention to continue to
serve my community as a public reprehensive for as long as that community
continues to have faith in me”

For confirmation call Sean MacManus at 086 8198456


‘Sligo Labour Party betray their supporters’-- MacManus

15 June 2009

Sinn Féin Councillor Chris MacManus has accused the Labour Party of ‘betraying their supporters for their own selfish reasons.’ Cllr. MacManus was speaking after today’s Mayoral Election for Sligo Borough Council, where Labour joined with Fine Gael and Fianna Fail to form a mayoral pact.

Councillor MacManus continued, “history was made last week when the people of Sligo – for the first time – elected a council, that on paper at least, was left-leaning and pro-community. However, Labour councillors reneged on the trust placed in them by their supporters, by agreeing an alliance with Fianna Fail and Fine Gael.

“Labour alongside Sinn Féin and Councillor Declan Bree had a mandate to implement a five-year agreed programme of progressive and pro-community policies. To ensure transparency in local government decision making, to make sure the public got value for money when public finances were being spent and that at last local communities, not developers and big business, took priority in City Hall.

“However, what have Labour done? They have rewarded Fianna Fail, a party that nationally has ruined the economy and that locally is destroying our health services here in the Sligo region. Labour must answer to the people on what deal has been struck by them on both Sligo Borough and County Councils with the establishment parties. Let the people judge whether these pacts were worthy of letting this historical opportunity pass.

Cllr. MacManus concluded, “my Sinn Féin colleagues Cllr. Arthur Gibbons, Cllr. Sean MacManus as well as myself have alongside Cllr. Bree signed up to support ‘A Civic Charter for Sligo’, a programme for governing the Borough Council over the next five years. We consider this a progressive document that addresses many of the issues facing our city and a framework for responsible local governance. It is most unfortunate that the local Labour Party Councillors have put themselves and their short-term needs before the requirements of the local communities they claim to represent. ENDS

MacManus calls on electorate to vote

Sinn Fein Councillor Sean MacManus has issued an appeal to the voters of Co. Sligo to come out and vote for real change next Friday. Speaking at the weekend Councillor MacManus said:

"The sharp end of the current economic crisis is being felt at a community and personal level throughout this state. Spending cuts and a lack of investment are undermining the delivery of key services. Many people are disillusioned with the government leading in some cases to reluctance to vote. I would appeal to those who might think about staying at home to reconsider as to not vote will only help this useless government.

"Local government matters. Decisions made locally will have a negative or positive impact on community life. To properly reform local government we need to change the balance of power on councils across the state that have been dominated by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael for decades.

"The recent laughable attempts by many Fianna Fáil councillors to distance themselves from the government, and indeed their own party, should be seen for what they are - political cynicism and an insult to the electorate. People can see through this charade.

"To the voters of County Sligo who are sick, sore and tired of the abuse that has been heaped on them by this rotten government, I say this – if you want to send the clearest message that change is needed, the most effective way to do that is to vote Sinn Féin.

"Sinn Fein’s record of working with local communities is well known by now.
Our party has delivered for people at a local level throughout Ireland. In this election we intend to seize the opportunity to continue that work and to do it on a wider scale.

"We are seeking a mandate to resist government attacks on working people and the vulnerable in our society. We want to fundamentally reform local government to make it responsive to the needs of the people and suited to the challenges of Ireland in the 21st century.

"Sinn Féin wants to build a real alliance for change and we will start at local government level.

"These elections can mark the beginning of a progressive momentum for new and positive politics. But only if people ensure that they go out and vote on 5 June."




Thomas Healy, the Sinn Fein candidate for the Ballymote electoral area, has received confirmation from Sligo County Council that they do not intend to provide a polling station for the part of Ballisadare remaining in the Ballymote electoral area. Mr Healy has described this as “ a retrograde step, discouraging people from coming out to cast their vote. Even at this late stage something can be done to facilitate the electorate of Ballisadare to vote in their traditional polling station instead of having to travel to Collooney.”

Ballisadare will be electorally divided for the first time in the local election contest on June 5th. The portion of the village on the right bank of the Ballisadare River remains in the Ballymote electoral area whilst the remainder has ceded to the enlarged Dromore West area.

“I have been campaigning on this issue since last January,” stated Mr Healy, “ when the village of Ballisadare was divided I knew immediately that this could cause an administrative problem for the polling station and made a request to the Council to provide a separate polling station for Ballisadare. I am extremely disappointed that the Council has not allowed this. It is vital that the part of the constituency covering Ballisadare, Collooney, Ballygawley and Ballingtogher elects their own representative to the County Council. However this decision by the Council is a disincentive to the electorate of Ballisadare to use their vote. In particular elderly people, parents of young children and anyone without private transport will find it difficult to travel to Collooney to cast their vote. I am calling on the Council to reverse their decision and either provide a polling station for Ballisadare or allow the electorate a dedicated polling box in their traditional polling station at St Johns National School. This is an unfair situation to place people in and I am calling on the Council to reverse their decision”.CRIOCH
For confirmation contact Thomas Healy @ 086 3666561


MacManus Appointed MacLochlainn’s Northwest Election Agent

Sinn Féin EU candidate Cllr. Padraig MacLochainn has announced that he is appointing Sligo Councillor Chris MacManus as his Election Agent for the Northwest Constituency.

Speaking after the announcement Cllr. MacLochlainn said: “I’m delighted to welcome Chris MacManus onto my EU election team. Having known Chris for many years, I’m confident that his long electoral experience, not only as a councillor, but as Sinn Féin Director of Elections here locally in many elections will greatly assist my campaign to represent this constituency as a MEP”

“Sligo is at the heart of the North and West EU constituency and since my selection I have been working closely with Sinn Féin representatives in the county, including Chris. In recent times I have joined local Sligo party representatives at demonstrations for the retention of cancer care services at Sligo General Hospital. 

"These are difficult times for people in Sligo as elsewhere. There are now over 4500 people on the live register in Sligo, over 1200 families on Sligo Borough and County Council Housing lists and 24 schools in the county on school building waiting list.  The people of Sligo deserve decisive  leadership and to have their interests represented locally, nationally and in the European Parliament. I am committed to representing the interest of the county in the European Parliament and am confident that the close working relationship I have with people in the county, including local party representatives, will empower me to do this.  

Cllr. MacManus said he was “greatly honoured by the confidence Padraig is placing in me to be his legal and electoral representative across all eleven counties in the Northwest constituency.” ENDS

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The Sinn Fein candidate for the Ballymote electoral area, Thomas Healy, has refuted claims by the Independent candidate , Tim Mulcahy, that Sinn Fein are not interested in registering voters onto the new and supplementary registers.

“Sinn Fein activists have been working since late last summer canvassing and checking registers for people throughout the Ballymote electoral area,” stated Mr Healy. “I have personally helped over 100 constituents with the registration process over the past eight months and we are all busy trying to ensure that all those eligible to vote are on the register before the impending deadline. This has included explaining the process to constituents and providing them with the correct forms.

“Sinn Fein, along with other bodies, has consistently highlighted our concerns with the electoral register especially during the general election of 2007. There is a large amount of painstaking work involved in making the register as accurate as possible and Republicans have been to the forefront in this work.”

“I welcome the efforts made by Mr. Mulcahy to participate in this process. However,” continued Mr Healy, “comments made by him that other parties are not engaged in this work are both inaccurate and hurtful. I did not want to claim credit publicly for this necessary political work but I do feel obliged to acknowledge the large body of work performed by many voluntary activists on this issue. Hopefully Mr Mulcahy will in future check his facts before making any further claims about the other parties contesting this election.” CRIOCH

For confirmation contact Thomas Healy @ 086 3666561 or
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