Sister of murdered man warns of dangers of voting for Sinn Féin

Thu, May 10, 2007, 01:00

Anti-SF candidate:The sister of murdered Dubliner Joseph Rafferty has said she is contesting the Dublin South East constituency to alert the electorate to the "dangers" of voting for Sinn Féin candidate Daithí Doolan.

Mr Rafferty was shot dead outside his apartment in west Dublin in April 2005. His sister Esther Uzell claims the murder was carried out by a member of the IRA and that Sinn Féin is protecting the identity of this man.

Sinn Féin yesterday denied any republican involvement in the murder or in any attempt at a cover up.

Ms Uzell, who was supported in her campaign yesterday by the sisters of Robert McCartney, who was murdered outside a Belfast bar in 2005, said that Mr Doolan, who is a serving Dublin city councillor, knew her brother's killer.

"Daithí Doolan has the name of my brother's murderer in his black book and I want to alert the electorate to the dangers of electing a Sinn Féin candidate to the Dáil."

Ms Uzell said she and her family had suffered intimidation from Sinn Féin activists as a result of her campaign, but she said she intended to continue to fight for justice for her brother and for other victims of the IRA.

"I wish to highlight the ongoing failure of Sinn Féin in general and particularly Daithí Doolan to fully co-operate with the police investigation into the murder of my brother."

Mr Doolan denied he had failed to co-operate with gardaí.

"Nothing could be further from the truth. I am a member of the joint policing committee for the area and I want to see justice for the Rafferty family as much as anyone else. The killing was absolutely wrong and should never have happened."

He said he had made a statement to gardaí and had been shown a photograph of the chief suspect in the case but had not recognised him.

"I never ever saw that man before. He did not have anything to do with Sinn Féin and was not a political activist."

Mr Doolan said he was running a robust campaign and did not expect his votes to be affected by Ms Uzell, but said he wished her "all the best" in her candidacy.

Sinn Féin TD Arthur Morgan yesterday supported Mr Doolan and rejected Ms Uzell's claims of intimidation by Sinn Féin activists.