The folly of Sinn Fein’s abstention from Westminster was once again brought into sharp focus when, within the last week, a number of key votes were lost by narrow margins particularly the amendment tabled by respected Labour MP Hilary Benn.
His amendment was defeated by two votes.
Had it have been passed, it would have enabled the Parliament rather than the Government to take control of parliamentary business and the Brexit process. Such a step would have been better in protecting the interest of both parts of Ireland as we reach the end game of this process.
It is likely that will be a series of further key votes.
If Sinn Fein continues with its abstentionist policy and key decisions which would have been beneficial to Irish interests, north and south, are defeated by less than seven votes then history can only conclude that together with the DUP they have both betrayed the long-term interests of this island.
John Cushnahan, Former Fine Gael MEP and former leader of the Alliance party, Lisnagry, Co Limerick