Monday 9 December 2019

'Let's take one election at a time, sweet Jesus' - Tempers flare as Gerry Adams is asked about running after next Dáil

Gerry Adams. Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire
Gerry Adams. Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire

David Kearns

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams appeared to lose his cool during a heated interview when asked if the upcoming general election would be his last.

Muttering “sweet Jesus” when quizzed if he would run again after the next Dáil, Deputy Adams said he was taking “one election at a time.”

Tempers flared earlier today when RTÉ host Cathal Mac Coille spoke with the Sinn Féin President on Morning Ireland.

Denying he had any responsibility to investigate the murder of Brian Stack, Mr Adams said it was a matter for the Gardaí.

"I didn’t speak to members of Sinn Féin because it isn’t our job to investigate these issues."

Read More: Adams admits he has names of the alleged Stack killers

Mr Stack, a father-of-three, was chief prison officer at Portlaoise Prison when he was shot by the IRA in 1983, dying 18 months later from his injuries.

Mr Adams said that he understood a number of people have been questioned about the shooting, adding that he himself had spoken to “others mentioned who are in prison.”

“They said they had nothing to do with it and when I asked them would they be prepared to meet with us and they said no.”

Asked if there was anymore he could do, Mr Adams replied: “We have in place a process for all of the victims.

Read More: SF president says party will campaign against Britain exiting the EU

“Austin Stack, on behalf of his family, thanked me for my work and said as long as I was doing my best he was satisfied. Well I did my best and I will continue to do my best… everyone deserves the right to truth.”

Speaking on RTÉ radio, Mr Adams said the reality was that people throughout the country were not seeing the benefits of the recovery.

“The Taoiseach referred yesterday to whingers and people who would not see the sunshine on a sunny day.

“People do not feel the recovery because there is no recovery for them… [because] this Government made the wrong decisions,” he said.

Asked about Sinn Féin’s housing policy, Deputy Adams blamed the Government for turning the housing crisis into a housing emergency.

Read More: Adams cast as 'alternative Taoiseach' for anti-water lobby

“First of all, lets look at the record of those in power…” he began before being Interrupted by host Cathal Mac Coille, who said “if you send ages on history, we wouldn’t have time to hear what you’re going to do.”

Mr Adams replied: “Well if you don’t interrupt me so much, I’ll be able to make my case.”

“We will build in the first term of any Dáil where Sinn Féin is part of the government 36,000 social and affordable houses.”

Read More: Taoiseach Adams ... the first 100 days

Asked how the party would pay from these homes, Mr Adams said "this isn't a pub quiz" and that a “cocktail of measures” would bring in an extra €2 billion annually.

When questioned about Thomas ‘Slab’ Murphy, Mr Adams responded that everybody should pay their taxes.

Concluding the interview, he said would like to take ministry if Sinn Féin got into government, and if the party were happy for him to do so.

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