Republicans from Dublin, Wexford, Kildare, Kilkenny and as far as Austria came to congratulate Des Dalton in his new position as leader of the oldest party in Ireland.
Des Dalton from Athy, Co Kildare, is shop steward in his local town, vice-president of his local SIPTU branch and member of the Republican Movement for more than 20 years. Before being elected as president he served as vice-president for many years. He was the republican candidate at the last two local elections in Athy.
Shane O’Toole of the Frank Driver Cumann presented Des Dalton with a framed picture on behalf of Sinn Féin Kildare. He also welcomed former POW Billy Philips from Wexford who was present at the function. Billy was just released from Portlaoise jail.
He announced Ard Chomhairle member Ger Foran who gave a lively speech in which he remembered his first meeting with Des Dalton about ten years ago and stressed the importance of the fight of the Republican Movement nowadays.
Des Dalton thanked everyone for coming, especially the two Cumainn for organising the function. He sent greetings to the republican prisoners in Maghaberry and Portlaoise and once again pointed out that the Republican Movement is the only force to achieve a united Ireland and drive the British Army out of Ireland.
He also stressed the importance of supporting the striking Green Isle workers in Naas and send greetings to them.
The members of Sinn Féin in Kildare want to take the opportunity to thank all who attended, especially Ger Foran for his speech and singer Paddy Sweeney for the great performance during the function.