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Monday 16 July 2018

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams warns of another election if government formation talks don’t end soon

Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams

Cormac McQuinn, Political Correspondent

SINN Féin leader Gerry Adams warned of another election if government formation talks don’t end soon.

Speaking ahead of this party’s Ard Fheis, he said there “isn’t much patience left” for the minority government negotiations between Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil.

However, he reiterated his party’s unwillingness to get involved in attempts to form a government saying that they would support neither Enda Kenny or Micheál Martin for the position of Taoiseach.

He said of the talks: “if they don’t come to a conclusion quite soon I don’t think there’s any option but to call for an election.”

With 23 TDs returned to the Dáil in the recent election, Mr Adams said the result was “more or less” what the party had predicted privately. He admitted he didn’t expect the loss of Pádraig Mac Lochlainn’s seat in Donegal and that he had expected Paul Donnelly to be elected in Dublin West.

But he insisted the party was “satisfied” with the outcome, despite complaining of what he claimed was a “tsunami of negativity which was poured over us”.

This evening’s Ard Fheis programme in Dublin’s Convention Centre saw delegates discuss  motions on the peace process, health and water charges, the last one including a section reaffirming Sinn Féin’s call for Irish Water to be abolished.

There were speeches by the North’s deputy first minister Martin McGuinness and Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald.

She argued that the attempts to form a government over the last eight weeks “have seen farce on a grand scale played out between Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil.”

She claimed the only difference between the parties is “which of them is top dog” and that issues like homelessness have been “left to drift” by the ongoing absence of a government.

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