Republican News · Thursday 14 December 2000

[An Phoblacht]

Great crowd at Mellows commemoration

A biting cold wind on Sunday last failed to deter the hundreds of republicans who turned out for the annual Liam Mellows commemoration in Castletown, County Wexford, one of the biggest attendances in recent times. The crowd, led by a large colour party from South Wexford and the Volunteer Hugh Hehir Republican Flute Band, marched from the Golden Anchor car park to Castletown cemetery, where the republican leader, executed during the Civil War, is buried.

Commemoration chair Fionntán Ó Súilleabháin introduced the guest speaker, New Ross councillor John Dwyer, who had the previous day been unanimously ratified by the Sinn Féin Ard Chomhairle as the party's candidate in Wexford for the forthcoming general election. Outlining what he referred to as ``Dwyer's immense work'' as a councillor to date, Ó Súilleabháin said he would be a ``force to be reckoned with by the establishment over the coming months''.

In his oration, Dwyer said that the fact that Mellows was probably the most prominent Irish republican socialist this century, after Connolly has often been overlooked. ``In an era when we need to share the wealth, his politics was never as relevant and therefore should be commemorated and celebrated,'' said Dwyer. ``His ideology was the opposite to Champagne McCreevy's.''

Referring to how Mellows was taken from Mountjoy Prison to be executed by former comrades, Dwyer attacked ``selfish Free Statism'' as ``Mé Féinism''quoting from Mellows during the Treaty debate of January 1922 `Men will get into positions, men will hold power, and men who get into positions and hold power will desire to remain undisturbed and will not want to be removed - or will not take a step that will mean removal in case of failure.'

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