Thursday 21 November 2019

Diaspora give McGuinness thumbs-up

Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness may be batting off questions about his republican past, but in London it seems the Irish Diaspora are supportive of his decision to enter the presidential race.

In Ealing this week, I met Francis Gallagher, from Co Donegal, who said: "If Martin McGuinness can put his republican past behind him and move on, so should the people of Ireland."

Rory McCarthy, from Cork city, shared a similar view, saying: "He deserves the right to run for election when you consider what he's done for the peace process." And Caroline Quinn, from Co Kilkenny, who moved to London just three weeks ago, told me: "I have no problem with Martin McGuinness putting himself forward once it's about him and not Sinn Fein."

But Mary Kennedy, from Co Mayo, had different ideas. She said: "They're only trying to use this to cripple Fianna Fail -- it's cynical and wrong."

This evening, the vote for Irish citizens abroad group (VICA) meet in Camden, in north London, to discuss the upcoming election and what role the diaspora can play in it.

For details, visit www.votesforirishcitizensabroad.com

Irish Independent

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