NI Labour will not sit quietly; we want to stand this May

Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor

The UK Labour Party National Executive Committee is currently in the latter stages of a review of its policy on elections in NI.

The UK Labour Party National Executive Committee is currently in the latter stages of a review of its policy on elections in NI. It is hoped that the undemocratic ban on contesting elections in Northern Ireland will be ended, particularly as the SDLP and Fianna Fail have now announced imminent merger (UK Labour has historically cited its ‘sister party’ relationship with the SDLP as a reason for not contesting elections in NI).

However, if the NI electoral ban is not soon lifted then NEC of the Labour Party cannot reasonably expect its members in NI to sit interminably passive on the sidelines.

The people of NI deserve better; they deserve the right to vote for candidates who will stand firmly on cross-community Labour principles against the corrosive effects of Tory policies on issues such as the health service, social care, benefits, disability, the environment and education funding. Candidates from the ranks of Labour Party NI will also campaign for marriage equality and full women’s reproductive rights.

The intention of LPNI is to identify and endorse as many candidates as possible, particularly in the local government elections in May 2019 and lay the foundation for continuing electoral engagement.

LPNI also welcomes the recent statement by Irish Labour Party leader Brendan Howlin that whatever the outcome of the current SDLP/FF talks Irish Labour “will continue to be a steadfast friend to those in Northern Ireland who support the Labour tradition”.

Padraig Murphy, Chairman of NI Labour Party, Lisnaskea