‘More sincerity in a bucket of slippery eels than Sinn Fein on Clontifleece issue’ – McGreevy

Newry Times News Posted by
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Wednesday, September 11th, 2013
Community, Politics

The SDLP says the decision to keep open a small rural school outside Newcastle has set down a vital marker for the survival of Clontifleece PS.

SDLP Councillor Connaire McGreevy

And Councillor Connaire McGreevy said the successful cross community campaign on behalf of Burrenreagh PS represented a message of hope for Clontifleece.

“The Minister and his fellow Sinn Fein party members can’t have it both ways. The facts are clear. He had to buckle in the face of a rational argument for the retention of a school that in many ways is a mirror image of Clontifleece,” McGreevy stated.

“So why is he prepared to implement a policy of educational provision discrimination between two rural schools in South Down? For a man who is used to his way being the only non-negotiable way the decision he was forced into making in relation to Burrenreagh represents an embarrassing defeat.

“Sinn Fein across the board in Newry and Mourne have been an utter disgrace in the spineless way they have been frightened to challenge their own Minister. Instead of trying to make a case for the keeping open of Clontifleece they have taken the coward’s way out by following the party line,” the SDLP Councillor blasted.

“There is more sincerity in a bucket of slippery eels than Sinn Fein on this issue. The fact is that the education authorities, across the board, have adopted a bullying approach to the supporters of Clontifleece PS, its pupils and staff.

“It makes a mockery of claims that the Education Minister is prepared to listen to commonsense when the argument is put forward on behalf of Clontifleece. Instead Mr. O’Dowd would appear to be using every trick in the Department of Education book of misinformation and double standards to try and axe Clontifleece.

“The closure of such an important element of the community, one that has been able to make a remarkable contribution to our society over decades, would be a total disaster.

McGreevy added, “The SDLP, at Council level and through the efforts of South Down MP Margaret Ritchie, will be doing everything in its power to make the Department of Education see sense in relation to Clontifleece.”


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