The president of the SF has urged the DUP to commit to ‘true powersharing.’


The president of the SF has urged the DUP to commit to ‘true powersharing.’

Mary Lou McDonald, the president of Sinn Fein, has challenged the DUP to commit to “true powersharing” with her party at Stormont.

The DUP’s “unwillingness to recognize rights and equality,” according to the republican leader, was a contributing cause in the current “political storm” that has battered unionism.

After previous first minister and DUP leader Arlene Foster was removed by her party and replaced by Edwin Poots, Sinn Fein originally refused to re-nominate Michelle O’Neill as deputy First Minister until the Irish language was guaranteed.

The DUP was shaken by an internal dissent by Mr Poots’ decision to proceed with appointing Paul Givan as the new first minister after the republican party got a commitment from the UK government to push cultural legislation at Westminster.

Following Mr Poots’ forced resignation, incoming DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson warned that expecting stability in Northern Ireland under the provisions of the Northern Ireland Protocol, which is part of the Brexit deal, is “not practical.”

We have no intention of humiliating or profiting from the DUP’s dysfunction.

“The outworking of Brexit and the decision of the DUP to support it, the inevitable disaster of the post-election pact with the English Tories, and the loss of the unionist majority in Stormont have created a political landscape which many within the DUP leadership seem incapable of reconciling themselves to,” Ms McDonald said in a keynote speech at the Balmoral Hotel in west Belfast.

Mrs McDonald said the DUP’s internal problems in the last week provided her with “no comfort.”

“We don’t intend to humiliate or profit from the DUP’s dysfunction,” she added.

Mrs McDonald stated that she spoke with Sir Jeffrey on Tuesday and that they would meet next week.

“The question facing him is whether he is up for true partnership, true power sharing, and effective political institutions,” she said. If he can respond yes to those questions, he will find a willing partner in Sinn Fein’s (deputy First Minister) Michelle O’Neill’s team.

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