“I’m glad it’s behind me now’ - says McEniff

No charges will be brought against two councillors following remarks they made about the Travelling Community earlier this year.

In January, veteran Fianna Fáil councillor, Sean McEniff, said he believed members of the Traveller community should live apart from the settled community.

Fine Gael Cllr. Eugene Dolan supported his comments, saying: “As far as I am concerned they can be sent to Spike Island for all I care.”

The remarks came in relation to Donegal County Council’s plans to purchase a 230,000 euro house in Parkhill, on the outskirts of Ballyshannon, to house a Traveller family. The councillors’ remarks caused a national public outcry and were condemned by many sectors of society.

Weeks later, just prior to it being handed over in February, the house was gutted in an early morning fire.

Complaints were made to the gardai under the Incitement to Hatred Act, and both councillors were subsequently interviewed.

On Friday, Cllr. McEniff, confirmed that he had been informed by the authorities that there would be no prosecution. Cllr. Dolan, a member of Ballyshannon Town Council, said that he had also been officially informed of the decision.

Cllr. McEniff said he was glad to put the issue behind him, adding: “ I am not a racist or a bigot, I just want a level playing field and one law for all which will allow everybody to live in peace.”