MP and former Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew.

Two prominent candidates announced for Midlands MEP race

Sinn Féin has announced that MP's Michelle Gildernew and Chris McManus will both seek a nomination to stand in the Midlands-North West constituency in the upcoming European elections.

Speaking following the announcement, Michelle Gildernew, said: “The European Union is crucially important to Ireland. Ireland needs to be the fore in setting the direction of the European Union in the years ahead, and I want to play a role in making that happen by bringing my experience of negotiation and dealing with EU institutions as a former Agriculture Minister to the job of standing up for Irish interests in the European Parliament.

“The European Union played a key role in ensuring Brexit did not create a hard border in Ireland, and I believe the North’s future must be within the European Union as part of a United Ireland.

“Ireland needs stronger representatives in the European Parliament. A strong Sinn Féin team will call out the EU when needed if it is not acting in the best interest of the Irish people or when EU office holders overstep their remit as the EU Commission President did in recent months.

“If elected my priorities will include:

• Ensuring the EU gets back to focusing on what matters to workers and families: supporting States in dealing with challenges such as the cost of living, regional development and climate change.

• Ensuring the needs of Irish farmers are at the heart of the next round of CAP negotiations.

• Maintaining Ireland’s veto in Foreign Affairs and Defence, protecting Irish neutrality and opposing increased EU military spending.

• Ensuring that the EU is proactive in support of Irish Unity.

“This is a time of huge potential and opportunity for Ireland. If elected as an MEP for the Midlands-North West I want to be part of delivering that positive change that communities, workers and families need.”

Mr Manus said: “I am delighted that my good friend and colleague Michelle Gildernew is seeking the nomination to run alongside myself in the EU elections in June. Michelle has the skills and experience to be an excellent representative for the Irish people on the European stage.”

“I believe a strong Sinn Féin team can transform the Midlands Northwest. Our region has tonnes of potential but it needs voices that will stand up for workers and families. It is our ambition in Sinn Féin to win two seats in Midlands Northwest and deliver the change that people seek.”

“We need a team who can reverse the damage our region has faced from years of failed Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil policies. Having two Sinn Féin MEPs will guarantee a better future for our region. More Sinn Féin representation at a European, National and local level is key to creating that future. We can deliver real change.”