Tuesday 25 July 2017

Kenny shows willingness to allow new Stardust investigation as families claim to have new evidence

The interior of the Stardust which went on fire on the morning of the St. Valentines Day 1981, killing 45 young people. Photo Independent Newspapers
The interior of the Stardust which went on fire on the morning of the St. Valentines Day 1981, killing 45 young people. Photo Independent Newspapers
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

Fine Gael and the Independent Alliance have resolved the political row over the Stardust tragedy.

Alliance minister Finian McGrath has agreed to a Government proposal that will appoint an independent person to examine new evidence uncovered by the victims’ families.

The counter motion - tabled on the back of a motion by ‘Independents4Change’ TD Tommy Broughan - is expected to to be passed tomorrow.

The counter motion also calls on the Government to meet the victims families and it commits to setting up a commission of investigation after the scoping inquiry, if called for.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has indicated a willingness by the Government to set up a commission.

Mr Kenny told the Dáil that new evidence being put forward by the victims’ families should be examined first.

Fine Gael has so far resisted such calls - but Independent Alliance minister Finian McGrath is backing the families’ demands.

Speaking during ‘Leaders’ Questions’ on Wednesday, Mr Kenny expressed deep sympathies with the families of the 48 people who lost their lives in the 1981 fire at the Artane nightclub.

“Nothing we say or do can bring back those loved-ones,” Mr Kenny said.

“Those of us who can remember that tragedy on that particular weekend can never forget it,” he added.

Responding to questions from Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, Mr Kenny indicated that the Government is willing to set up a commission of investigation.

“There is no disregard to a principle for having a commission of investigation,” he said.

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