THE family of a murdered Donegal councillor yesterday renewed calls for an independent public inquiry — 15 years after the killing by loyalist paramilitaries.
Eddie Fullerton’s children said many questions remained unanswered about the night loyalist gunmen crossed the Border, burst into their parents’ home in Buncrana and shot their father dead in front of their mother. Allegations of collusion between the loyalist death squad and British intelligence and questions about the role played by gardaí prior to the murder and in the investigation have dogged the incident since.
Three gardaí centrally involved in the investigation were discredited by the Morris Tribunal last year and councils on both sides of the Border support family calls for a public inquiry.
The family renewed their appeal for a meeting with Justice Minister Michael McDowell as they gathered to mark the anniversary of the death at Muff on the Donegal/Derry border, where the gunmen are believed to have escaped back to the North.
“Given the level of corruption that has been exposed within the Buncrana/Donegal gardaí and their link to our father’s case, the revelations ofcollusion exposed by the Stevens Inquiry team and reputable journalists, as wellas new allegations that some members of the RUC received prior notice of themurder, we call once again on Minister McDowell to concede to our demand for a full, independent and transparent public inquiry, and chaired by a person of international reputation.”
The family said Mr McDowell had never responded to their previous requests for a meeting. But now, following the death of Eddie’s son and spokesman for their campaign, Albert, in a car crash in March, they were renewing the efforts of the Eddie Fullerton Justice Committee (EFJC).
“The EFJC will be meeting over the next few weeks to agree a strategy for the way ahead,” they said. “We will renew our efforts to engage with the British and Irish Government representatives, including Minister McDowell and the Police Ombudsman, Nuala O’Loan, and put to them our key demands.”
The Fullerton family have a number of questions that need immediate answers:
nWhen will the report on the 2004 reinvestigation into the murder be published?
nHas Mr McDowell received any response to the ‘mutual assistance request’ made to the British authorities and police in the North, that in April 2005 he told the Dáil were holding up the 2004 reinvestigation?
nWhen was the request for information originally forwarded by the Irish Government to the British authorities and when is a response from the British authorities is expected?
nHow did correspondence between the Irish and British Governments relating to the 2004 reinvestigation go missing?
“It is unacceptable that for 15 years the Government has failed to treat the murder of our father, an elected representative with the seriousness that it deserves. It has failed us all.”
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