Martina Anderson and Karen Mullan will not seek re-election as Sinn Féin MLAs for Derry
Derry MLAs Martina Anderson and Karen Mullan will not seek re-election to the Assembly following a recommendation from their own party which came as a “body blow” Ms Anderson said.
Both MLAs however will remain within the party and will continue on as Sinn Féin activists.
In a statement issued tonight via social media, Ms Anderson said: “At the end of last year the Sinn Fein leadership initiated a party review of Sinn Féin in Derry.
“One of the recommendations of that review was that the two Sinn Féin MLAs in Derry should be asked to stand down. As a Republican activist for over 45 years I admit that recommendation came as a body blow.
“Since then I have been contacted by comrades, friends and supporters from across Derry and beyond offering their solidarity and support.
“The majority have urged me to stay on. It has been a difficult time for Karen Mullan and I, but we have approached this with Republican integrity and Derry pride. This struggle is bigger than any one of us.
“The national leadership correctly wants to re-energise SF in Derry and reconnect it to our base. Since coming back from Europe I have sought to do just that despite only being an MLA for a number of weeks when the global pandemic impacted on my activism, It did not deter it as the hundred of people I helped can attest.”
Ms. Anderson said she would continue to be a Republican activist within Sinn Féin and support whoever has the ticket at the next Assembly election.
Karen Mullan meanwhile Tweeted: “I confirm that I will not be seeking a nomination to stand for @sinnfeinireland at the next Assembly Election.
“It has been a great privilege to represent and work for the people of Derry.
!I will continue to be a Sinn Féin activist and I look forward to a new chapter in my life.”
Mayor of Derry & Strabane, SDLP Colr. Brian Tierney was among those to pay tribute to the two Derry politicians tonight.
He said: “Best of luck to Karen Mullan and Martina Anderson as they announce they will not stand at the next assembly election.
“Both worked hard for our city.
“Both very committed to Derry and it’s people.”