Irish Republican News · October 24, 2010
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Fermanagh/South Tyrone election result finally confirmed

A legal challenge against the re-election of Sinn Fein MP Michelle Gildernew in the Fermanagh/South Tyrone constituency has been rejected.

The case was brought by the unionist candidate Rodney Connor who lost by four votes after three recounts in the Westminster general election in May.

Following a three-day hearing in Dungannon last month, the number of disputed ballots was found to be only three.

The judge found that while there were some issues with how the counts were conducted, none would have produced a different result.

Ms Gildernew said she felt vindicated by the result but said the case should never have been brought to court.

"It is high time that political unionism accepted the democratic will of the people," she said.

"They have elected me as their MP at the last three elections and I am immensely proud and honoured to represent all the people of the constituency."


Meanwhile, there were celebrations in County Tyrone last week as the last two cross-border routes closed by British forces more than 30 years ago were reopened to the public.

The Annaghroe and Knockaginny bridges between Glaslough, County Monaghan and Caledon in County Tyrone were among scores of routes shut during the conflict.

But replacement bridges have been unveiled and the split between the two counties ended for good.

It marked the end of upheaval for generations of residents and farmers in the area, forced to endure detours around closed roads.

At the opening, Michelle Gildernew said: "Re-opening of these bridges marks an historic day for communities and parishes in this area. The new bridges reunite and reinstate connections which had been lost decades ago and will bring great social, cultural and economic benefits to the area.

"I welcome the completion of the work by Roads Authorities on both sides of the border and commend the residents and landowners for their co-operation and patience during construction."

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