Sinn Féin spokesperson on Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has said that the planned commemoration of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) and the Dublin Metropolitan Police (DMP) on the 17th January is an insult to those who fought for Irish freedom.
Teachta Ó Snodaigh said:
“As a member of the All-Party Consultation Group on Commemorations, I can attest to the fact that the Committee were not consulted on this commemoration, and if we were I have no doubt that it would have dismissed out of hand because it is an insult to those who fought for Irish freedom.
“The role of the RIC, and the DMP, were not merely to act as police forces, but they had a specific role to instill terror in the populace in an attempt to break the democratic will of the Irish people for independence.
“In no other State that has emerged from anti-colonial struggle would they celebrate the deeds of the oppressors.
“This is Fine Gael revisionism in action, which has seen more emphasis placed on celebrating partition and the Government of Ireland Act than other key historic events that were part of the architecture of the fledgling Republic declared in 1916 and the events that surrounded its attempts to assert its rights.
“Fine Gael are more interested in commemorating the enforcers of British rule in Ireland – such as the RIC and DMP – than ordinary citizens who bore the brunt of British forces, including those in the RIC and its reinforcements in the Black and Tans and Auxiliaries.
“It is an insult to their legacy.”