3rd February 2002
SF will take decision on referendum in coming days
Commenting on the announcement that the abortion referendum is to take place on March 6th Sinn Fein spokesperson on Equality and party candidate in Dublin West Mary Lou McDonald said ``the party will take a formal decision regarding our attitude to the Twenty-Fifth Amendment to the Constitution (Protection of Human Life in Pregnancy) Bill 2001 in the coming days but the recommendation to the Ard Chomhairle is that we call for a no vote.'' Ms. McDonald said:
``This is an extremely difficult issue as there are many strongly and sincerely held views on all sides. However we believe that it is unfortunate that the government has chosen this path to deal with the issue. If successive referenda have shown us anything it is that the Constitution is not the appropriate place to deal with this complex issue.
''Furthermore there are many concerns that the constitutional / legal mechanism being employed in this Bill is bad legislative practice and may be unconstitutional. This procedure runs the risk of long running legal action and yet another requirement to put the issues to the people in a referendum. Sinn Fein will formally decision our attitude to the referendum in the coming days but the recommendation to the Ard Chomhairle is that we call for a no vote.''
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