McDonald rejects Sinn Féin ‘secrecy’ claims over vice presidency vote

McDonald rejects Sinn Féin ‘secrecy’ claims over vice presidency vote

Mary Lou McDonald has rejected claims of Sinn Féin secrecy as she defended not publicising details of the vote that saw Michelle O’Neill re-elected vice-president.

In a rare contest for a Sinn Féin leadership role, Ms O’Neill saw off the challenge of former Stormont minister John O’Dowd at the weekend.

The outcome was announced on Saturday at the party’s Ard Fheis in Derry but the breakdown of the vote among party members was not, prompting accusations of a lack of transparency.

“There’s absolutely no secrecy, there’s no secrecy around anything,” said Ms McDonald on Thursday.

“Sinn Féin, unlike other political parties, elect our leadership, I’m sure you are aware that other deputy leaders are simply appointed by the leader in question.

“We’ve had our Ard Fheis and the delegates have had their say and here we are.”

Michelle O’Neill was returned as party president after a vote by members (Brian Lawless/PA)
Michelle O’Neill was returned as party president after a vote by members (Brian Lawless/PA)

Ms McDonald joined Ms O’Neill and other senior party figures at Stormont on Thursday for a meeting with Northern Ireland Secretary Julian Smith to discuss the powersharing impasse.

Afterwards, the party president, flanked by Ms O’Neill, insisted the vote in Derry was in line with party procedures.

“The result is public, the result is that Michelle O’Neill was returned,” she said.

“This is an internal appointment, we do it by way of a process within the party where delegates come to the Ard Fheis and they cast their vote.

“We do that every year. Last year we had a contest for the position of general secretary and that’s how it is and it’s not the practice to publish figures.

“The result is known, you all know the result, the process is an internal one and it’s now concluded.”

More on this topic

Sinn Féin bill proposes mandatory dog litter bags for ownersSinn Féin bill proposes mandatory dog litter bags for owners

'Huge potential' in reunification but no need to change flag says Mary-Lou McDonald 'Huge potential' in reunification but no need to change flag says Mary-Lou McDonald

Michelle O’Neill's winning margin in Sinn Féin vice presidency race revealedMichelle O’Neill's winning margin in Sinn Féin vice presidency race revealed

Mary Lou McDonald declines to condemn IRA murder bid on DUP leader’s fatherMary Lou McDonald declines to condemn IRA murder bid on DUP leader’s father


More in this Section

FAI’s debts could surpass €55mFAI’s debts could surpass €55m

Hard Brexit ‘not a realistic expectation’, says Ray O’RourkeHard Brexit ‘not a realistic expectation’, says Ray O’Rourke

Department of Health blocks €2k to Cervical Check victimsDepartment of Health blocks €2k to Cervical Check victims

Someone is €1 milllion richer following Euromillions drawSomeone is €1 milllion richer following Euromillions draw


Lifestyle

As we wait, eager and giddy, a collective shudder of agitated ardor ripples through the theatre, like a Late, Late Toyshow audience when they KNOW Ryan’s going to give them another €150 voucher. Suddenly, a voice booms from the stage. Everyone erupts, whooping and cheering. And that was just for the safety announcement.Everyman's outstanding Jack and the Beanstalk ticks all panto boxes

Every band needs a Bez. In fact, there’s a case to be made that every workplace in the country could do with the Happy Mondays’ vibes man. Somebody to jump up with a pair of maracas and shake up the energy when things begin to flag.Happy Mondays create cheery Tuesday in Cork gig

More From The Irish Examiner