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Scéal Dún-na-nGall ar an Idirlíon / County Donegal on the Net News
Vol.3 No.6 December / Nollaig

(This page is archived as it initially appeared online - any broken links are subsequent to publication)

Save The Swilly
The Minister of the Marine has rejected the Save the Swilly Campaign's call to commission an Independent Environmental Impact Assessment on the lough. Save the Swilly states that the Precautionary Principle outlined in the 1992 OSPAR Convention is the basis of their campaign and that the Government should act accordingly as they are signatories to the Convention.
The Government used the OSPAR Convention as the basis of Ireland's suit against the UK government over the Sellafield Nuclear Plant.
For further information email:

SHP Gallery Exhibition
The SHP Gallery is currently hosting an exhibition of hand picked local crafts including furniture by DAM; Dunlewey Pottery by Kim Sharkey; Stone sculpture by Redmond Herrity; Bog and drift wood sculpture by Julia Fleury and original photographic works by Siobhan Hegarty. The Gallery is at Castle Street, Letterkenny. Email:

Turbulence over Errigal
An Aer Arann ATR 50 aircraft experienced severe turbulence over Errigal on the 2nd of December during its flight from Dublin to Donegal's Carrickfinn Airport. The flight was only a few minutes from the airport when it was hit by turbulence at 2,000 ft. Several passengers were slightly injured and all were in shock but the flight landed safely.
A spokesperson for the airport blamed the incident on bad weather but passengers claimed the weather was clear at the time. The ATR 50 did not make the return flight to Dublin which was delayed by 2 hours while passengers awaited the arrival of a second plane.

EU unloops the Loop
Erkki Liikanen, the European Commissioner for Enterprise and Technology, is considering a lawsuit against Ireland and 10 other EU States for failure to unbundle local loops. Liikanen said local loop unbundling is essential for stimulating competitive broadband access, as was mandated in March 2000 as part of the eEurope strategy.
In Ireland's case the regulator, Etain Doyle, is not happy with Eircom's proposed charges to other telecoms who won't enter the market at current costs. In Donegal's case this translates as poor telephone connectivity outside of Letterkenny. While the number of businesses throughout Ireland who have email and a website is currently at 10% it is less than 5% in Donegal.

Gildea Causes Havoc
Independent TD for Donegal South West, Tom Gildea, caused uproar in the Dáil in late November when he accused former Minister of Justice, Nora Owen, of sending the Gardai to quash local opposition to MMDS television (microwave) in Donegal in 1996. The Deputy, who has rarely spoken in the Dáil (see Newsletter Vol.2 No.5), claimed that Nora Owen should be investigated for abusing her powers, that she was 'the enthusiastic and willing hand maiden' of the company who were given the licence and that she had received financial remuneration from them. The accusations took place during a Dáil Debate on an opposition motion calling for an open Tribunal into Gardai behaviour in Donegal following the Carty Report and the McBrearty case.
Gildea and Independent Fianna Fáil deputy for Donegal North East, Harry Blaney, voted with the Government and against the motion which was then defeated. Gildea later apologised for his remarks but the opposition boycotted the Dáil for 2 days and called for a motion of censure against him which was defeated by 77 votes to 73.

LYIT Student laid to rest
Twenty one year old Maurice McMenamin from Ture, a Business Studies student at Letterkenny Institute of Technology, died from meningitis in late November and a number of students at the college were subsequently vaccinated.

Road Deaths down on last year
Twelve people have lost their lives on Donegal roads in 2001 (to date) compared with 17 deaths in 2000. The majority of those who died were under 30 years of age. Over 4,000 people have received fines for speeding and the non wearing of seat belts in the County and the Gardai will be very evident on the roads over the coming holiday period.

Sinn Féin in Donegal North East?
Rumour has it that Sinn Féin may stand Mitchell McLaughlin, the Sinn Féin National Chairman, in the Donegal North East Constitutiency in next year's General Election.

Christmas Cards for Donegal Hospice
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