Cork TDs had ‘no ulterior motive’ attending meeting Bertie Ahern addressed

Cork TDs had ‘no ulterior motive’ attending meeting Bertie Ahern addressed

Bertie Ahern, former Taoiseach.

TWO Cork Fianna Fáil TDs who attended an online meeting with former taoiseach Bertie Ahern have insisted they had no ulterior motive.

There had been suggestions that attending the meeting was seen by some within the party as an “open act of defiance” against the Taoiseach and party leader, Micheál Martin.

However, both East Cork TD James O’Connor and Cork North Central’s Pádraig O’Sullivan said that the topic of discussion was Irish unity and nothing more.

Mr O’Sullivan told The Echo: “I attended a Zoom meeting with 100 Fianna Fáil members on Tuesday night and the topic of discussion was Fianna Fáil’s track record in the Good Friday Agreement and the possibility of a referendum, in the future, on a united Ireland. 

"There is no ulterior motive. We specifically spoke about the Good Friday Agreement. There was no internal party politics spoken about at all.”

Mr O’Connor said: “The former taoiseach’s Zoom presentation on the topics of a united Ireland and on the peace process come at a time when there is increasing focus on unity.

“We must begin to prepare ourselves for a potential referendum towards the end of this decade.”

Mr Ahern is also set to take part in a similar discussion, with the Donogh O’Malley Cumann, in University College Cork on February 9.

A post on the cumann’s Facebook page says that the meeting will discuss “the peace process and the current state of affairs”.

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