EMBATTLED Sinn Féin TD Sandra McLellan has broken her silence about the bitter row which has split her constituency organisation.
Ms McLellan has said the recent controversy has been “tough” for party members in the Cork East constituency.
The Cobh-based deputy has also said she regrets the loss of party members following the ongoing controversy.
But she has also made it clear that she will stand in the next general election as a Sinn Féin candidate - and ended speculation she might join another grouping.
“I will be contesting the upcoming convention and hope to win the support of the party members in Cork East to stand once again for Sinn Féin and to retain this seat for the party,” the Sinn Fein TD said.
The comments follow an internal party investigation into a prolonged and internal party row in Cork East Sinn Fein. This led to the expulsion of Cllr Kieran McCarthy and the suspension of another councillor Melissa Mullane.
Cllr McCarthy has said he will appeal the decision and had met with his solicitor. A number of members from the Fermoy cumann have quit the party over the controversy.
But Ms McLellan has said she was satisfied with the outcome of the party’s internal review of the constituency and was looking forward to getting on with the party’s work.
“There can be no doubt that the internal review in Cork East has been tough for party members. It has been long but it has been thorough and I believe that it has been fair,” Ms McClellan said today.
Expressing regret at the loss of members, she added:
“Nobody likes to lose party members but now is the time to move on from this whole episode and I am looking forward to getting on with the party’s work in the constituency and building for the future.