24/7 flags policy: McShane issues invitation to Unionists

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The political row over Causeway Coast and Glens Council’s policy to fly the Union flag at all of the local authority’s buildings is continuing.

This week Sinn Fein announced they will be ‘calling in’ the decision for legal advice and independent Republican councillor Padraig McShane revealed that an individual from Ballycastle will be placing the Council on a notice of motion on the issue.

Cllr McShane also said that the decision would be challenged in both the Council chamber and the courtroom, adding that “If that appears to get us nowhere a more direct action will manifest itself to protect these community relations that are the ethos of Republican principles we live out in the Glens.

“The meeting made clear, any flags of colonialism, supremacy and dictatorship will be removed.”

This prompted reaction from both the UUP and the DUP groupings on CC&G Council with group leaders Cllr Norman Hillis and Cllr John Finlay respectively issuing statements.

Now Cllr McShane has issued “an invitation” to both elected members to visit Ballycastle and the Glens.

He said: “I want to extend a warm Ballycastle and Glens invitation to visit the area to both John and Norman. “While there I wish to offer them the chance to explain to this community how their decision can further community relations.

“Outside of that I feel no obligation to respond to their musings. They can be summed up as an attempt to be relevant on a subject that is quite possibly a little beyond their sophistication.”