PRESIDENTIAL candidate Martin McGuinness has “totally rejected” claims made by Anne McCabe, the widow of murdered Limerick Detective Garda Jerry McCabe, in a statement released to the Limerick Leader last week.
Mr McGuinness abruptly cancelled plans to visit Limerick city on Thursday afternoon after the story broke, visiting Newcastle West briefly before returning to Dublin.
Media were not informed in advance of this trip, despite advance notice being given in previous weeks of Mr McGuinness’s movements.
Mrs McCabe and her family spoke out on Mr McGuinness’s candidature for the presidency, stating that the the Sinn Féin politician was aware of the whereabouts of two men who are still wanted in relation to her husband’s killing and that McGuinness had visited Kevin Walsh, the man later convicted for his role in the 1996 Adare shooting, while he was on the run and had not “prevailed on Mr Walsh to hand himself in”.
Mrs McCabe’s statement claimed that “the actions and statement of Mr McGuinness do not make him a suitable candidate for the officer of President of Ireland”.
Local Sinn Féin councillor Maurice Quinlivan refuted any suggestion that Mr McGuinness was avoiding the media or a possible hostile reception as a result of the McCabe statement by not coming to the city this week.
“Absolutely not. I think that is ridiculous. Martin McGuinness canvassed with me here in February and he got a very positive reception, I think he would have got the same,” explained Cllr Quinlivan.
“I don’t know about the county, I can’t speak for that. There was a city programme, but we didn’t go ahead with it because of scheduling (problems) - you can read into that what you want, but that is all that happened,” he added.