Cllr Martin Browne of Sinn Féin Cashel has spoken of what he sees as the hypocritical, misleading and deceptive commentary that has arisen since the result of the elections in Great Britain and the North.
He was speaking in response to calls from Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael that Sinn Féin abandon their long-held abstentionist policy in relation to seats won in the election.
Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin said it was ‘totally illogical’ for Sinn Féin to refuse to take up their seats and leave the nationalist community without representation.
Outgoing Taoiseach Enda Kenny also raised concerns about the lack of nationalist voices in Westminster.
Cllr Browne said: “It is hypocritical for Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael to call for Sinn Féin to take up their seats in the Westminster Parliament.
"Fianna Fáil have chosen to forget that the seat now taken by Chris Hazzard of Sinn Féin in South Down was previously held by their Eamon de Valera, the last apparent ‘Republican’ to have held that seat. Fine Gael similarly forget that Sinn Féin’s Michael Collins was also elected to the Westminster Parliament, and refused to take his seat for Cork South in 1918.
"Both Eamon de Valera and Michael Collins refused to take those seats as an oath of loyalty to British royalty was offensive to them. This remains the case for members of the only truly Republican party left on the island, Sinn Féin.
"In addition, the suggestion that abandoning the platform upon which Sinn Féin MPs stood would be sufficient to stop the Tory/DUP coalition is misleading. Those numbers don’t add up. Even if all parties in Westminster came together to support Corbyn’s Labour, there would still be a shortfall of six seats.
"Apart from not being able to add, only FF and FG commentators who routinely show such disregard for those who elected them could view such a fundamental policy reversal as a possibility."