Debate and discussion at Fermanagh People’s Assembly

OVER 200 people turned out to the Westville Hotel in Enniskillen on Thursday night for the Fermanagh People’s Assembly which was aiming to discuss the ‘bread and butter issues of a new Ireland’.

Organised by Sinn Féin’s ‘Commission on the Future of Ireland Committee’, a Fermanagh-led panel discussed a diverse range of issues including education, health and transport in a future United Ireland.

Fermanagh and South Tyrone MP Michelle Gildernew opened the event. Mary Lou McDonald, president of Sinn Féin, later took to the stage to lead the opening remarks.


“The latest poll suggests that the majority of people on the island are seeing their future in a united country. We have to embrace it with respectful dialogue by all,” said the Dublin politician.

Ms McDonald also said that she has ‘no faith in Rishi Sunak or the Tory Government’ and she called on people to consider what a future United Ireland might look like for the Fermanagh community.

The discussion panel was chaired by Enniskillen BID manager Noelle McAloon and Newtownbutler’s Kathleen Fitzpatrick.

Enniskillen-born Dr Niall McVeigh, who’s the current director of Cavan Institute, spoke about how it’s important to maintain a strong education system, should the North and the South merge.

A number of education professionals from Fermanagh, including principal of Holy Trinity Primary School, Brian Treacy, were present on the night.

Local school campaigner Mairaid Kelly explained that a future United Ireland could bolster the transport systems in Fermanagh. She welcomed the news of the potential development of the Enniskillen bypass.

Award-winning director Trevor Birney, who said he was raised in a mainly Protestant estate in Derrychara in Enniskillen, belived that a ‘United Ireland is inevitable’.


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