People Before Profit looking for ‘different type of Ireland’

People Before Profit say they don’t just want a united Ireland “to get rid of the union”, but instead to form an entirely different type of country in which everyone is better off.

Launching the party’s general election manifesto, representatives were asked if a pro-union socialist should vote for a party that wants to end partition.

Belfast North Westminster candidate Fiona Ferguson said the party wants “to see a united socialist Ireland”.

However, she added, they understood “there is no good reason for working class people, socialist or not – and for those from traditionally Protestant backgrounds – to vote for an Ireland where they’re not materially better [off], because why would they?”

Ms Ferguson said that when People Before Profit talks about a united Ireland, the party is following the vision of socialist James Connolly, who was one of the leaders of the Easter Rising in 1916.

“James Connolly set out where every ordinary person on the island would be better off, not just in terms of material wealth, in terms of culture, in terms of quality of life, in terms of having a say, in terms of running the island,” she said.

“So we’re not just talking like ‘get rid of the Union and get a united Ireland’. We’re talking about an entirely different type of Ireland.”

As well as ending partition the party wants to

  • Tax the rich and redistribute wealth
  • Establish a £15 per hour minimum wage, with state subsidies for small businesses
  • Develop a national construction agency
  • End the “cosy relationship between paramilitaries and state agencies”

The party’s leader in Northern Ireland, Gerry Carroll, said: “The solution is two-fold. First is to tackle the huge wealth inequality that exists across these islands and tackle the major profits of corporations and the wealthy who have been ripping people off.

“But it also matters to get a platform of elected representatives to get people organised and fight back.

“That’s what we do. We have councillors elected and an MLA and we have TDs (members of the Irish Parliament) elected and if we have an MP elected we will do the exact same thing. “

He said he looked forward to the Conservatives being “turfed out of office”, claiming “they’ve been disastrous for public services, for workers’ rights, for migrant rights, the environment and for pretty much everybody across these islands”.

But he also said the party was ready to fight Labour leader Keir Starmer “from day one”, adding he did not offer “much of a break from the Tory party”.

Source link