SF Meeting Set To Confirm McDonald As Next Party Leader

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams with Dessie Ellis outside Leinster House

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams with Dessie Ellis outside Leinster House

Dubliln based Mary Lou McDonald is set to become the new leader Sinn Féin.

Deputy McDonald's succession to president-elect comes after Gerry Adams previous year announced he would be standing down as his party's leader in 2018.

McDonald, who's now deputy leader, has been a member of the lower house of the Irish parliament since 2011.

"But I have brought my own shoes and together, with all of the party membership, we will walk on a journey that will lead to Irish unity".

A new poll gauging people's opinion on the Gerry Adams' successor-to-be has found that, while some people may be swayed by her leadership, most will not. "I know we have a job to do to convince them of that, but I know we are more than fit for that task", she said.

"As we enter a new era, we look ahead with confidence as a party that is about being in government here in the north, in government in the south also, working forward all the time for the realisation of our ultimate goal of Irish unity".

Sainz completes 2018 Dakar rally victory, Walkner wins bike class
The Indian rider rode with a goal to improve his ranking and finished the 13th stage in 33rd position. It is also a third win in four races for Peugeot, who have said they will not race next year.

A special party conference to elect a new leader will be held on 10 February.

Blevins said: "She's not a woman who anyone would want to take lightly".

He described politics in Northern Ireland as "very polarised and very toxic".

McDonald became a member of the European Parliament in 2004. "It is my view that this does not help anyone except a small minority of bigots", he said.

In his speech, Mr Adams stated that "it is not in the interests of the vast majority of citizens that political parties should retreat to our trenches and hunker down comfortably in the certainty of our respective positions".

Mr Adams also said a united Ireland was not a "pipe dream", adding: "It is very achievable - we can do it".

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