March 9, 2023
Moves on Westminster Nationality and Borders Act welcome but major flaws remain – Seanadóir Niall Ó Donnghaile

Sinn Féin Seanadóir Niall Ó Donnghaile has welcomed that the British government has dropped plans to require non-Irish EU citizens resident in the South to apply for a visa waiver scheme when travelling to the North of Ireland.

However, the party’s Seanad leader said outstanding problems caused by the legislation must be addressed. 

Speaking today, Seanadóir Ó Donnghaile said:

“It is welcome that the British government appears to have dropped this appalling and totally unworkable proposal, but concerns remain that this small step will not solve the overall problems caused by this regressive legislation.

“The Tories’ Nationality & Borders Act introduced the unacceptable prospect of visa requirements for certain people travelling across this island.

“Pushing this through would be an affront to the Good Friday Agreement and would cause untold damage to community, societal and business relations on the island. 

“In May last year the Seanad unanimously supported my motion rejecting the imposition of an electronic travel waiver on non-Irish and non-British citizens who wish to travel south to north. 

“It’s clear that this will have a negative impact on the all-island economy, and I would urge the British government to ensure this Act does not go ahead in its current form given its damaging impact on the lives of people here.” 

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