Line-up for unity conference announced

Foyle Sinn F�in MLA Raymond McCartney and councillor Colly Kelly preparing for the party's Uniting Ireland conference which will be held in the Millennium Forum on Saturday January 28th. (1301MM06)

Foyle Sinn F�in MLA Raymond McCartney and councillor Colly Kelly preparing for the party's Uniting Ireland conference which will be held in the Millennium Forum on Saturday January 28th. (1301MM06)

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Ulster Unionist MLA Basil McCrea, veteran trade unionist Inez McCormick, and former senior civil servant George Quigley will be among the panellists at the Uniting Ireland conference in the Millennium Forum at the end of the month.

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams announced details of the panellists who will address the conference, which will be held in the city on Saturday, January 28th.

Martin McGuinness and fellow Sinn Féin representatives Pearse Doherty TD will also be on the panel alongside former Donegal County Council chair, Martin McLoone.

Mr Adams said; “The Derry conference is the latest in a series of Uniting Ireland conferences which have attracted thousands of participants over the last 14 months.

The conferences are about encouraging a dialogue around the construction of a new republic which will embrace all the people of this island.

To date the conferences have been addressed by a wide spectrum of speakers covering issues as diverse as education; the role of trade unions; the economy; the place of unionism in a united Ireland; health co-operation and much more.”

The Sinn Féin president said he hopes the diverse mix of individuals on the panel for the Millennium Forum event will attract a large crowd.

“The panel we have for the Derry conference contains experienced political, community and business activists – leaders – and I am confident that their contribution will add significantly to the ongoing debate on this important issue.

“Partition has had serious adverse economic, social and political consequences for all the people of this island but particularly those communities, like the north west, which straddle the border.

“Sinn Féin believes that Uniting Ireland makes economic sense; it makes common sense. We are not alone in this view. There are many who see logic of greater harmonisation and co-operation on all of those matters which affect the daily lives of citizens from health, the environment, education, agriculture, transport, job creation, taxation and strategic investment,” he said.