Speaking at the launch outside Irish Nationwide bank in Sligo at 12 midday on Saturday, exactly ninety fours years to the minute after Padraig Pearse read aloud the 1916 Proclamation at the GPO in Dublin proclaiming the Irish Republic, local éirígí activist Gerry Casey said:
“The social and national ideals contained within the Proclamation of 1916 have been completely abandoned by the political establishment, north and south of the border. The British occupation and partition continues, with British troops and a British police force continuing to engage in the repression of the nationalist community and all those opposed to the continuing occupation and the human rights abuses being committed by the occupation forces.”
He added: “Mass unemployment continues. Thousands of our young people are being forced to emigrate, unable to survive following massive cuts in their social welfare payments. Poverty is on the increase. Savage cuts have been imposed in our local health and education services.”
“The choice of location for the launch was symbolic. Irish Nationwide, the bank brought to its knees by Sligoman Micheal Fingleton, along with other financial institutions are being being bailed out with tax-payers money to the tune of at least €70 billion.”
“Instead of the Republic envisioned in 1916, what we have is a partitioned Ireland, continuing British occupation, social inequality, increasing poverty, and a two tier society.”
Speaking as they distributed these proclamations, Casey said: “We have begun to distribute these proclamations here in the city centre and door to door in the Sligo area and will continue doing so in the coming weeks. We aim to make people aware of the full extent of what NAMA and ever more cutbacks planned to fund these bank bail outs will mean for families in working class communities.”
He concluded: “There is a stark choice facing Irish society now. It can accept the NAMA Republic and proceed with the failed capitalist system that led us into this economic wasteland and is guaranteed to lead us back there once again. Or it can mobilise to smash the NAMA Republic and build a new Ireland based on the vision of the 1916 Proclamation. One that is based on public ownership, that respects workers rights, that ensures health and education services based on a person's need, not their wealth, and a decent standard of living for all.”
The ‘Proclamation of the NAMA Republic’ can be viewed here.