NI: Irish language group to launch court case against NI Executive

NI: Irish language group to launch court case against NI Executive

Irish language organisation Conradh na Gaeilge has launched legal action against the Northern Ireland Executive over its alleged failure to implement the Irish-Language Strategy 2015-2035.

In a statement, the group said it would challenge the Executive in court for what Conradh na Gaeilge sees as a failure to meet its obligations under the terms of the St Andrews Agreement in 2006.

Cóilín Ó Cearbhaill, president of Conradh na Gaeilge, said: “The British Government specifically pledged to implement an Irish-Language Strategy in the 2006 St Andrews Agreement, while the current Executive’s Programme for Government 2011-2015 refers to the Strategy under Priority 4 of the Programme ‘Building a Strong and Shared Community’. Minister Ní Chuilín undertook a comprehensive consultation with the public on the range and contents of this Strategy upon her appointment to the Department.

“Following a lengthy process, the Strategy to Enhance and Protect the Development of the Irish Language 2015-2035 was published on 30 January 2015 and since then, the Irish-language community has been working closely with the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure to realise the objectives of the Strategy.

“Conradh na Gaeilge therefore finds it unsatisfactory that the Strategy has not yet been accepted by the Executive, despite the progressive steps as outlined above having been taken.”

Ciarán Mac Giolla Bhéin, advocacy manager with Conradh na Gaeilge, said Conradh na Gaeilge’s Coiste Gnó (executive committee) had “decided that the Executive’s inaction warrants a court case to legally oblige them to fulfil their obligations”.

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