Adams call for Foster to step aside ‘hypocritical’

Austin Stack
Austin Stack

A son of an Irish prison officer murdered by the IRA has branded Gerry Adams “hypocritical” for calling on DUP leader Arlene Foster to step aside as first minister.

Austin Stack was speaking after Mr Adams led calls over the weekend for Mrs Foster to stand down pending an investigation into the Renewable Heat Incentive scandal.

On Monday Martin McGuinness resigned as deputy first minister which is likely to lead to the collapse of the Assembly.

Mr Stack’s father, Brian, was a Portlaoise prisoner officer who died after being shot by the IRA in 1983.

Last month it emerged that the Sinn Fein president had emailed Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan four names in February in connection with the murder.

Mr Adams has repeatedly claimed in public that Austin Stack gave him the names, claims which Mr Stack has fervently denied.

The matter has prompted repeated debates in the Dail in Dublin, with Mr Adams coming under fire from Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Labour leader Brendan Howlin.

Mr Stack told the News Letter: “It is very hypocritical of Gerry Adams to be calling on the first minister to do the right thing while he will not do the right thing in relation to the information that he has in my father’s murder investigation.”

Mr Stack said that on several occasions Mr Adams has publicly called on anybody who has information regarding the murder of his father to go to An Garda Siochana.

“His own reluctance to do just this seems to imply that he holds himself above the law and is willing to apply a different set of standards to himself than he would to any other citizen of this republic,” he added.

Aileen Quinton, whose mother Alberta died in the 1987 IRA bomb in Enniskillen agreed. “Gerry Adams should be first in line for stepping aside,” she said.