Tuesday 12 December 2017

Gerry Adams will stand for office of Taoiseach

Sinn Féin leader argues no party has mandate for government

Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams
John Downing

John Downing

SINN Féin leader Gerry Adams will formally contest for the job of Taoiseach – despite insisting his party has no mandate from voters to form a government.

Mr Adams also brushed aside a question about the real power of decision in such matters laying with his party’s 19-member executive committee, or Árd Comhairle. This body includes several former IRA members.

He said that on this occasion the Árd Comhairle had deferred the decision on his candidature to the party’s TDs and Senators.

Speaking to reporters at Leinster House Mr Adams said he was “honoured” by the decision taken by his Oireachtas group.

The Sinn Féin leader accused Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil of “shadow boxing” and “game playing.”  He said it was wrong that the Dáil will be adjourned after Thursday’s vote – which will not produce a result - for more negotiations on forming a government.

Mr Adams said people suffering from hospital waiting lists and the housing crisis and would be “left to twiddle their thumbs.”  He argued that the ministers responsible for health and housing should be summoned to answer for the problems and explain what action was being taken.

He argued that the general election result had shown there were no more “no go areas” in politics for Sinn Féin. But he again ruled out serving a junior partner in government.

 Mr Adams also said he would continue as party leader as long as his health, his family and his party allowed it.

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