[Sinn Fein]

19 February 2001

``Deep sense of frustration among republicans - We will not allow our expectations to be lowered'' - Sinn Fein TD

Sinn Fein TD Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin addressing the Frank Stagg memorial lecture in County Mayo last night said that republicans feel a ``deep sense of frustration'' at the continuing failure to implement the Good Friday Agreement ``and a process which is limping from crisis to crisis''.

Deputy Ó Caoláin said:

``The entire Agreement and the process of its implementation have been warped to accommodate unionist opposition. It is totally unacceptable to republicans that almost three years after the Good Friday 1998 we have an Agreement that is only partially implemented and a process which is limping from crisis to crisis. Many republicans feel a deep sense of frustration. I share their disquiet

``No matter how great the difficulties of the peace process we are in this for the long haul. We are committed to this process because it is a process of change and we are a party change. We will not allow those who resist change - be they within unionism, the British establishment or sections of the Irish establishment - to lower our expectations.''


Deputy Ó Caoláin slammed the mismanagement of natural resources by the Irish Government. Referring to the Corrib gas field, off the coast of Mayo, he said:

``Enterprise Oil and Gas has been allowed to reap the benefit with the lowest taxes and no royalties going to the State. This is intolerable and the very least that must be required of the private consortium is that the gas supply is made available on as grid serving North Connacht and Ulster.''

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