Remembering Bobby Sands election win

IT HAS BEEN 40 years since Bobby Sands was elected MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone, while on hunger strike in the H-blocks of Long Kesh back 1981.
Friday past marked the watershed moment that saw Bobby Sands defeat Ulster Unionist leader Harry West after he received 30,492 votes and topped the poll with a 1,447 majority from a turnout of 86.9 percent.
Reflecting on the historical campaign and the weeks leading up to his  victory, campaign organiser Danny Morrison spoke with current Fermanagh and South Tyrone MLA Michelle Gildernew via video link.
Mr Morrison recalled how it was the first time a prisoner on hunger strike had ever been put up for election, stating, “the stakes were extremely high.”
Looking back on his memories of travelling down to Enniskillen during the election campaign, Mr Morrison spoke fondly of Fermanagh and the people in it.
“We learned a lot of things when we met the people in Fermanagh and  South Tyrone. They had everything at their finger tips,” he said.
“They new everything about registers, postal votes, absent votes, and more and it was just extraordinary and very humbling to see and it became a big campaign.
“It involved people who weren’t just republicans, people who were nationalists, independent and of course lots of people from across Ireland came in to add their weight to it. It was incredible.”

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