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Deputy Wynne has joined the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement.

Clare’s Wynne joins Good Friday implementation committee

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AN INDEPENDENT Clare TD has pledged to seek clarity on the trade relationship between Ireland and Britain, after joining a prestigious political grouping on the Good Friday Agreement. 

Deputy Violet-Anne Wynne was appointed this week to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement. 

She joins the panel of nine TDs and seven senators to tackle matters including reconciliation, legacy issues, North-South co-operation, and Brexit and outreach.

The Independent TD will be working alongside three members of her former party, Sinn Féin, as well as another ex-member of that party, Peadar Tóbín of Aontú. Clare’s other Independent TD, Deputy Michael McNamara was a member of the committee from September 2020 to October 2022. 

On her appointment to the committee, Deputy Wynne described the trade relationship between Ireland and Britain as “incredibly significant” to Clare’s farming and business communities. She vowed to work to get answers to their questions on the future of trade, and to work to protect the landmark 1998 peace agreement. 

The Good Friday Agreement is the most significant piece of legislation that we have on this island,” she said. “This landmark agreement provided for peace across this island North and South and it is essential that this peace is protected at all costs. We must do everything that we can to protect the agreement, especially in the wake of the evolving political situation in Northern Ireland, and the prospect of starting 2023 with an election up there.” 

Deputy Wynne said that, as the 25th anniversary of the signing of the agreement approaches, it is time evaluate how Ireland North and South has changed over the last quarter of a century.

“The effects of the agreement can be seen in everything from educational exchanges like the Washington Ireland Program to sporting events, and in funding for community centres and civil society groups/NGOs over the past 25 years,” she said.

At the centre of the Good Friday agreement is the protection of British-Irish relations, for peace’s sake but also for economic concerns. Irelands trade with the UK is vital to economic survival and growth. In September of this year, we imported €2 Billion of Goods from the UK and exported €1.4 Billion – €413 Million of this was the export of food and live animals, which has seen an increase of 40% since this time last year.

“This trade relationship is incredibly significant to my constituents in Clare who are entrepreneurs, SMEs, and farmers. I have met many of them since my election who are worried about the future of this relationship, and I will do my best on this committee to seek answers for their very important questions.”

Deputy Wynne described peace on this island as “the most fundamental freedom that we have”.

“I look forward to hearing from witnesses how this lasting peace has improved the lives of us all, and in particular, how it has helped to grow strong and sustainable cross-border friendships and communities,” she said. 

The committee was formed at the start of the 33rd Dáil and 26th Seanad to consider issues arising from Irelands role as a signatory to the Good Friday Agreement and ongoing developments in the implementation of the agreement. It reports back to both Houses of the Oireachtas at least once a year. Deputy Wynne described herself as incredibly honoured and grateful” to have been invited to join the committee.

Fiona McGarry
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Fiona McGarry joined The Clare Champion as a reporter after a four-year stint as producer of Morning Focus on Clare FM. Prior to that she worked for various radio, print and online titles, including Newstalk, Maximum Media and The Tuam Herald.
Fiona’s media career began in her native Mayo when she joined Midwest Radio. She is the maker of a number of radio documentaries, funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI). She has also availed of the Simon Cumbers Media Fund to report on development issues supported by Irish Aid in Haiti.
She won a Justice Media Award for a short radio series on the work of Bedford Row Project, which supports prisoners and families in the Mid-West. Fiona also teaches on the Journalism programmes at The University of Galway.
If you have a story and would like to get in touch with Fiona you can email her at [email protected] or telephone 065 6864146.

About Fiona McGarry

Fiona McGarry joined The Clare Champion as a reporter after a four-year stint as producer of Morning Focus on Clare FM. Prior to that she worked for various radio, print and online titles, including Newstalk, Maximum Media and The Tuam Herald. Fiona’s media career began in her native Mayo when she joined Midwest Radio. She is the maker of a number of radio documentaries, funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI). She has also availed of the Simon Cumbers Media Fund to report on development issues supported by Irish Aid in Haiti. She won a Justice Media Award for a short radio series on the work of Bedford Row Project, which supports prisoners and families in the Mid-West. Fiona also teaches on the Journalism programmes at The University of Galway. If you have a story and would like to get in touch with Fiona you can email her at [email protected] or telephone 065 6864146.

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