From Militant Labour, March 1993.
Transcribed and marked up by Ciaran Crossey.
Proofread by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL). (July 2012)
Militant Labour branches across the North have been discussing fielding candidates in their areas in the May local elections. So far the South Belfast and West Belfast branches have decided to contest at least the Laganbank and Upper Falls seats. The Derry branch will stand in the Northlands district and our Mid-Ulster branch has decided to put up a candidate in Cookstown.
Other branches are still discussing the question and consideration is being given to calling broad selection meetings in a number of areas to pick candidates. These decisions follow from our success in last year’s general election when the showing of Harry Hutchinson in Mid-Ulster and especially the 900 votes for Peter Hadden in South Belfast demonstrated a solid basis of support for our socialist ideas.
Yet again the usual sectarian political rubbish will be putting themselves forward and asking people to re-elect them in May. The record of these people in office has been pitiful. Belfast councillors have treated themselves to junkets while at the same time voting through Tory cuts and privatisation. Elsewhere local politics has been reduced to petty sectarian squabbling while nowhere on any council chamber has there been any serious attempt to oppose the devastating effects of Tory policies.
Militant Labour is now the only credible force on the left in Northern Ireland. Our record in combating sectarianism and defending working class unity and socialism speaks for itself.
In the election out candidates will spell out the alternative to the Tories and the bigots concentrating on issues such as the health service, water privatisation and the need for mass action by workers to stop the killings.
Obviously we will not be able to fight every seat but we are appealing to Trades Councils and trade unions to also put up candidates. It should be possible for all sections of the labour movement to co-operate on what areas they contest and to offer a broad socialist platform. This would be the first step towards the building of a socialist Labour party.
However we will be concentrating on our own areas and out own candidates. If you want to help in our election campaign in any way, putting up posters, giving out leaflets, or by a donation, contact us as soon as possible.
Instead of the sectarian din which comes from the council chambers at present, help us put a socialist voice on your council.
Last updated: 18.7.2012