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‘We Deserve Better’ protest will take place in Strabane

A PROTEST movement demanding that the North’s politicians “re-establish Stormont institutions immediately” is organising a Strabane event.

The ‘We Deserve Better’ campaign kicked off after Fermanagh man Dylan Quinn voiced his frustrations on social media about the lack of a functioning government.

Since then and with events taking place across the North later this month, a gathering is being organised for The Tinnies site in Strabane tonught, August 28 at 7pm.

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Organisers say they want to attract between one and 589 people, to reflect the number of days the North has been without a government.

“We are choosing to do something to demand better for our society,” organiser of the Strabane leg of the protest, Ríofach Cannon explained.

“Yes, there is a lot to fix however we cannot fix anything unless we begin that process.
“The Northern Ireland Assembly is supposed to work for all of us, at the moment it is working for none of us.”

As of today (August 28) Northern Ireland has become the country without a government for the longest period in peacetime, although this will not be officially recognised.

The North has now passed Belgium, which holds the world record of 541 days without a government.

However Guinness World Records said the North is ‘not eligible’ for the record as it is still able to have laws passed at Westminster.

“We’re planning on having a number of speakers at the event and we’re hoping as many people come out as possible,” Ríofach explained.

“It’s important that we make our voices heard about this because, especially in the midst of Brexit, we need a government. It’s definitely a case of ‘the more the merrier’ but I think the people who care will turn out.”

Northern Ireland has been without a government since January 2017 after the power-sharing executive collapsed over the RHI scandal. This led to a snap election the following March where Sinn Féin and the DUP were voted back in as the largest parties. However a deal to restore institutions has systematically remained beyond agreement.

Back in July it was revealed that some £9million in salaries has been paid to MLAs since the Stormont collapse.

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The Strabane Chronicle is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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