SF insists Brexit is not a done deal

Cllr Brain McCaffrey#27F26F

BREXIT is “not a done deal” and the people of Fermanagh must work together to stop the county being “dragged out of Europe.”

That was the message to emerge from a public meeting in Lisnaskea last week, where people had the opportunity to voice their concerns over the outcome of the June 23 referendum. 

While the meeting was organised by Fermanagh Sinn Fein, with Finance Minister Mairtin O Muilleoir, Martin Kenny TD, Michelle Gildernew MLA and Sean Lynch MLA all speaking, it was open to everyone in the community and was attended by a crowd from all backgrounds and ages. Afterwards, organisers said that the message from the people was clear – we don’t want to go. 


Among the issues raised were concerns over EU funding in the county, including European financial support for community groups, local services, the Single Farm Payment, and structural funding for infrastructure. Local students also voiced their anxiety over their futures and participation in European study programmes such as the Erasmus, while many said they were worried about the local economy and the consequences of a hardened border. 

Speaking afterwards, Mr Lynch said: “The people in this community are scared about what the future holds if the Tories go ahead with their plan to take us out of Europe. But Brexit is not a done deal. It is still all to play for.

“The economy here in the North has been impoverished by being shackled to Britain and we here in Fermanagh South Tyrone have felt that more than most. Brexit has the potential to turn our region into an economic basket case as well as depriving our young people, our farmers, our businesses and our communities.

“The message that we got from the room is that people are going to fight this and we in Sinn Fein will fight alongside them. We did not vote to leave the EU and that vote needs to be recognised and respected.”

Siobhan Currie, PRO for Fermanagh Sinn Fein, said there was a strong message from the meeting that local people did not want to be “dragged out of Europe” against their will, and added their office had been “inundated” with queries from concerned locals since the referendum result. 

“The aim of the meeting was to get people together to see what the main issues are,” she said, calling on all sides of the community and people from all sectors and walks of life to “come together.”  

“What we need is for people to come together, from grass-roots to government level. People want to fight it, but we all need to do it together.” 


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