Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams should “tell the unvarnished truth” if he is questioned by the PSNI about the murder of Jean McConville.
That was the call from NI Conservatives’ co-chair Trevor Ringland, who said that Mr Adams – who has always denied IRA membership – must lead by example.
“Mr Adams says he is prepared to talk to the PSNI about this terrible incident”, he said.
“However, many people are understandably sceptical about the likelihood of the Sinn Fein president providing an honest account, given that he still maintains he wasn’t even a member of the IRA.
“He should set an example to other members of his party, take some responsibility for his movement’s violent past and volunteer everything he knows about Jean McConville’s murder to the police.”
Earlier Mr Adams said he “can understand the McConville family’s anger and hurt”.
He also criticised the Boston College oral history project as “an entirely bogus, shoddy and self-serving effort by those involved”.
Mr Ringland said to overcome the legacy of the Troubles “it’s no good having a process where some people are seemingly exempt from the truth”.
He added: “A mature attitude to dealing with the past, from Sinn Fein, would involve co-operating with efforts to provide justice for victims, even if it were to mean that senior members had to go to jail for two years.”
Mr Ringland spoke out as victims’ group Innocent Victims United (IVU) called for “an independent public inquiry to rebuild confidence in the political process”, in the wake of the revelations about letters of comfort sent to on the runs (OTRs).
Group spokesman Kenny Donaldson said an “independent public inquiry should examine the full details of the ‘political chess game’” between the Government and the republican movement.
Mr Donaldson said everybody has the right to expect the state “to carry out a proper investigation of murder and all have a right to live in a way where they are not re-traumatised”, adding that questions remain about what the letters really mean for those who recieved them.