McGuinness and O'Callaghan clash: What was said

Fri, Oct 14, 2011, 01:00

HOST MIRIAM O’Callaghan and Martin McGuinness clashed several times during the RTÉ Prime Timedebate.

MO’CHow do you square, Martin McGuinness, with your God the fact that you were involved in the murder of so many people?

MMcGI think that’s a disgraceful comment to make.

MO’CYou were in the IRA.

MMcGI was in the IRA, I joined the IRA as a result of a conflict that broke out on the streets of Derry when I was 18 years of age . . .

Later, O’Callaghan asked the Sinn Féin candidate whether he goes to confession and questioned him further about his membership of the IRA, which Mr McGuinness says he left in 1974.

MO’C: We’re not going to argue that fact that absolutely everyone thinks you were there [in the IRA] longer after 1974.

O’Callaghan then said she would “park” what had happened in his past, but continued to ask questions about the IRA murders of members of the Defence Forces, such as the killing of Pte Patrick Kelly in 1983. Pte Kelly’s son David confronted Mr McGuinness about his father’s killing during the campaign.

MO’CWhat have you done for that man David Kelly since you spoke to him, in terms of naming the people who killed his father?

MMcGBut sure I don’t know who killed his father.

MO’CBut you’re a Republican, you know everyone in the Republican movement.

MMcGI think that’s a stupid statement for you to make.