Revelations that Sinn Féin’s senior leaders have not yet spoken to police five months after attending the Bobby Storey funeral demonstrates the party’s hypocrisy once again, a Fine Gael Senator has said.
Senator Emer Currie said it is deeply disturbing to read that some senior Sinn Féin leaders have still not spoken to police, after Deputy First Leader Michelle O’Neill, Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald and Pearse Doherty, joined hundreds of others at the funeral of Bobby Storey in Belfast on June 30th last during the height of public health restrictions.
Senator Currie said, “Reports that some Sinn Féin leaders have still not spoken to the investigator appointed by the PSNI five months after their attendance at the funeral where there were apparent breaches of public health guidelines, should not come as a surprise from the party that consistently talks out of both sides of its mouth.
“Confirmation that legal representatives of those sought for interview and those investigating the event are arranging a date for a voluntary interview only came this week after it was reported that no interview has taken place to date.
“Why the delay? Why the stalling tactics? What is the issue here? Who is directing this? Do Sinn Féin not want to be held accountable to the same standards that all else are?
“Both Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald and Michelle O’Neill eventually apologised for the hurt caused by their attendance at the funeral which took place at a time when so many families were unable to give their loved ones a proper goodbye during the pandemic,” Senator Currie said.
Two months ago, Mary Lou McDonald she would “absolutely cooperate” with the investigation and boldly declared that investigators “needed to crack on with it”.
“So why the delay? Why haven’t senior party figures made themselves available to the police five months on given the huge public anger over the event?
“Whether it was an acceptable or the appropriate choice for the Dublin leadership of Sinn Féin to travel to Belfast for a funeral that they knew would be big is one matter.
“But they have also failed to answer whether it was acceptable to participate in a separate political rally in Miltown cemetery that had nothing to do with the funeral service.
“The difficulty for Sinn Féin is that they cannot defend the indefensible,” Senator Currie concluded.