SDLP criticises apparent breaches of Covid restrictions at Derry funeral

Tue, 26/01/2021 - 12:42 -- Editor

Social Democratic and Labour Party Leader Colum Eastwood MP has said that scenes from a republican funeral in Derry will be ‘heartbreaking’ for families who have sacrificed the right to say goodbye to a loved one during the Covid-19 crisis.

Prominent Republican Eamonn “Peggy” McCourt from Creggan died at the weekend, having contracted Covid-19.

The Foyle MP said that all parties should come together again to send a clear message to our community that the Covid-19 restrictions apply to everyone equally.

Colum Eastwood MP said: “The scenes from this funeral are heartbreaking. Thousands of families across our communities, and hundreds in Derry alone, have sacrificed the right to say goodbye to their loved ones during this crisis. They have acted selflessly to protect their neighbours and friends and pictures like these will feel like a slap in the face.

“I understand the grief that this family is experiencing. We have all experienced the trauma of loss during the pandemic. But those who gathered in this large crowd outside of the restrictions have abandoned their duty to their neighbours and to our community.

“My message to people in all of our communities is simple – please do not gather in large crowds. It is not safe and by doing it, you’re risking the lives of everyone you come into contact with.”