RUC try to disrupt election
``THE RUC WAS INTENT ON provocation,'' said Sinn Féin's Sean
McKnight after RUC raids on Sinn Fein election premises as voting
was under way last Thursday 1 May.
The first raids occurred at about 4.30pm when a house in
Ballymurphy being used by Sinn Féin election workers was hit. The
RUC maintained they were looking for ``illegal election material''
being used for personation. After a fruitless search which lasted
about 45 minutes they left.
During the RUC raid a large number of local people, angry at the
RUC's behaviour, gathered but the situation was kept under
control by Sinn Féin representatives.
``Had it not been for our party representatives giving responsible
leadership the incident could have turned into a riot, something
the RUC seemed to want given that they had up to 30 jeeps in the
area,'' said McKnight who is the councillor for the area.
Two other houses in the Moyard area were also raided while a Sinn
Féin election worker was beaten by British troops in an incident
Later that evening, within minutes of Gerry Adams leaving a Sinn
Féin tally hut in Jasmine End in Twinbrook, the RUC raided the
premises. Again they used the pretence of searching for ``illegal
election material'' but again found nothing. In the course of the
raid the RUC ripped election material from the walls.
Sinn Féin election candidate in the forthcoming local elections,
Paul Butler, again asked a crowd which had gathered not to ``play
into the RUC's hands.
Go to the polling station, put your X beside Adams' name, that's
the best way to deal with these people,'' he said.