[Marxism] Peggy O'Hara takes on Sinn Fein

Philip Ferguson philip.ferguson at canterbury.ac.nz
Wed Feb 14 18:07:35 MST 2007

The New Sinn Fein betrayal has prompted 76-year-old Peggy O'Hara, mother
of one of the ten hunger strikers who died in 1981 (Patsy O'Hara, of the
INLA), to stand for the Stormont Assembly elections on an abstentionist
ticket.  Peggy is linked with the Irish Republican Socialist Party but
is standing as an independent to build a wider campaign.

I would urge anyone here interested in Ireland to support her campaign
in any way including donating towards her campaign.

Go Peggy!!!

Peggy O'Hara handed in her nomination papers yesterday as part of her
election campaign. 

Afterwards a press conference was held in Derry. 

On the platform with Peggy at the press conference were Bernie McFadden
(formerly Bradley) who is a former Sinn Fein Councillor in Derry, Martin
McMonagle of the IRSP, Gary Donnelly who is a member of the 32CSM and
Danny McBrearty of the Concerned Republicans and ExPows group. Each
outlined why they are endorsing Peggy's candidature. 

Vote Peggy Website: http://www.peggyohara.netfirms.com/ 

The wesite has a guestbook and supporters are urged to sign it. There is
also a facility donate to the campaign directly from the website. All
donations will be acknowledged and are appreciated. 

Email: votepeggy at googlemail.com 

Statement from Peggy O'Hara at the Launch of Election Campaign 

First of all I want to thank everyone for coming here today to support
the launch of my election campaign. I want to thank my supporters in the
various groups represented beside me here on this platform. I have been
getting huge offers of support and solidarity. I believe that people are
finally awakening to what is happening. If elected I will not be
entering Stormont. I will not be taking a seat in this bastion of
unionist misrule. The only thing that should happen in Stormont is it's
downfall. Anyone here remember the old republican slogan "SMASH
STORMONT!". Well that's what I believe should happen. Stormont and the
northern state cannot be reformed. 

I decided to stand in this election because when I think about my son
Patsy and how he was burned and brutalised by the RUC. I don't want
republicans to accept this force. They weren't acceptable in years gone
by and they aren't acceptable now. Do you realise that the 90% of the
membership of the PSNI were formally members of the RUC. The PSNI is the
old RUC and nothing has changed. But I am also standing on a republican
platform. I want to see an end to British misrule in our country. I want
to see Ireland united. I want to see the people of Ireland united and
they cannot be united under the crown. 

One thing that I have learned over the years is Republicans should never
ever trust the British to deliver on their promises. I should know,
after all my son Patsy would be alive today if the British had kept to
their side of the deal that brought to an end the 1980 hungerstrike.
Britain can not and Britain will not provide a fair, open and
accountable policing and justice system in this country because it's not
in their interests. They have no right to do so anyway as they are an
illegal occupying force in Ireland. 

I believe that the policing debate is a red herring, a side show and a
distraction. The main issue is the illegal British involvement in our
country. There is no such thing as British "justice". They don't know
the meaning of the word. I am all for peace but this peace process is
one-sided and embarrassing. Sinn Fein have accepted and endorsed a
partitionist settlement and have given their support to the RUC who have
committed so many crimes against our people. That cannot be denied or
spun to mean something that it isn't. But I know one thing, my son
Patsy, and other brave republicans went to their deaths in the belief
that they were fighting to get the British establishment out of Ireland
once and for all. If they had known then that the struggle would end in
support for the RUC then they would not have felt it worthwhile putting
their lives on the line. Can anyone say any different? 

I want decent policing and I stand for a peaceful solution to our
problems. On the 7th March I ask you to consider voting for me and to
show your support for what I am standing for, in a non-violent and
political way. I believe that this process has weakened and fractured
republicanism. I want to see a united, confident and strong republican
family in the coming years.

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