Updated: Sep 7

Statement from Belfast WolfeTone/McCracken cumann 32CSM on energy price rises.

Gas supplier Firmus Energy have announced today a 56.3% increase on the price of household gas, effective as of October 3rd, an eye watering increase amidst the ongoing cost of living crisis.

One of the current director’s of this private company is Jennifer ‘Jenny’ Pyper, appointed to the role in November 2021. In a sweeping contrast the year prior Jennifer held the position of interim head of the civil service, a body described as “managing government contracts and providing frontline support to people using public services”, yet is now fuelling and benefitting from this crisis.

What’s even more surprising and worrying though is the position Jennifer Pyper held before her public service role. From 2013 until 2020 she was Chief executive of the Authority For Utility Regulation, a supposedly independent body set up to regulate household utilities such as gas and electricity and who state on their website “promote the short and long term interests of comsumers”.

It’s amazing how this woman who was the face of a body designed to help the public, could become the director of a company now fully engaged in a cost of living attack on the public.

Jennifer Pyper’s involvement in these private and public sectors exposes the level of infiltration and power that big energy companies have over supposed publicly accountable bodies. She is just one of the countless individuals manipulating the public sector to benefit these multi national companies and private investors.

Firmus aren’t alone in this latest price hike, many energy companies have already stated that come October their prices will rise a significant amount, companies such as SSE Airtricity who will increase their electricity prices by 38.5% and gas tariffs by 28.4%, squeezing the absolute maximum out of consumers, mostly the working class who are already on their knees due to the extortionate costs of living necessities. This while the cost of wholesale gas fell by more than 20% last week.

As we approach the winter months this attack on the working class will only get worse unless we as members of the public living on the frontline of this crisis band together in a unified force and demand in whichever way necessary, an end to this inhumane saga. Corporate greed needs to end now.

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We would like to thank all those who travelled near and far today to commemorate the 10th anniversary of IRA Volunteer Alan Ryan.

We would also like to thank the Parkhead Republican Flute Band for travelling over from Glasgow to lead the march.

Lastly we would like to offer a special thanks to the Ryan family, particularly Alan's brother Dermot for his loving insight on the life of Alan.

Go raibh mile maith agaibh.

Despite the terrible weather and harassment from MI5 led garda special branch, a great crowd was in attendance with representatives of different Republican organisations which shows the support and respect Alan held across the board.

Today's main oration was delivered by Francis Mackey, national chairman of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement:

'On this the tenth anniversary of the murder of Volunteer Alan Ryan we once again extend our sympathy and solidarity to the Ryan family. We remember his disciplined and dedicated service to the cause of Irish republicanism and the pursuit of our national sovereignty.

As we mark his tenth anniversary it is worthy to note the parallels between the choices Alan made in relation to the Good Friday Agreement and the stance taken by Liam Lynch and Tom Barry one hundred years ago towards the Anglo Irish Treaty.

In rejecting so called peace terms under the threat of war both generations of republicans were labelled anti-peace, vilified as enemies of democracy and faced imprisonment and death from those who once swore the same allegiance to the Republic as they did.

Alan stood with Barry and Lynch, not as some romantic student of history, but as a learned republican who studied the lessons of history and applied what he had learned to the contemporary struggle.

We challenge any impartial observer or historian to determine any difference between the stance that Volunteer Alan Ryan took, and the stance took by Volunteers Lynch and Barry.

It is by no means easy to stand principled against the manufactured tide of a deeply flawed peace. It requires a deep dedication to principle to allow the din and howls of rhetoric slowly fade into their own contradictions and hypocrisies.

The qualities that Alan brought to the republican struggle are qualities that it demands today. His death has robbed us of his personal contribution to the struggle at this time but his life can continue to instruct us on how our struggle should be conducted.

We reiterate our core contention that the continued absence of republican justice for this despicable deed represents a major stumbling block for the development and progression of Irish republicanism itself.

Since partition was re-endorsed by the Good Friday Agreement, and the lessons since 1922 completely ignored, Irish republicanism has been found wanting in its abilities to re-invent itself to face the contemporary challenge.

This State has weathered the storms that the centenaries of our great revolutionary period should have generated. Rather than face the verdict of history the so-called Civil War Parties claimed political unity at Beál Na Bláth.

Their electoral opponents, and co signatories to the continuation of partition, Provisional Sinn Féin, complete the circle.

This is not a watershed in Irish politics. It represents the inevitable evolution of partition, that counter-revolutionary path that gave us the violation of our sovereignty, a sectarian based body politic in both statelets, the subordination of women and the profligacy of the landlord class.

It should come as no surprise to Irish republicans that this State would advance the memory of Michael Collins above those whom the British ordered Collins to attack. The great ‘what ifs’ of history are the perfect distraction from discussing the ideas and positions of those who perceptively answered them.

For some time, and in solidarity with fellow republicans, we have highlighted the importance of definitive language not only to set us apart from the establishment but to also strip bare the empty rhetoric of those pseudo republicans claiming the mantle of history.

In a common Easter Statement, read out at various locations throughout Ireland, it was asserted:

“The language of republicanism must be the language of sovereignty. Terminology such as ‘Irish unity’ and ‘united Ireland’ are too vague in meaning and provide refuge for those who can use such terms for political effect but without any obligation to pursue them.”

We have held firm on the issue of sovereignty. As have the British. The question for Irish republicanism now is how do we place that issue on the British agenda when the broad body of the Irish political class refuses to do so?

Our own ineffectiveness has proven their greatest asset in preventing us from doing so. It would seem that Irish republicanism faces a dichotomy as to how we move forward. Should we do so through persuasion or provocation?

Beir Bua!

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“We therefore declare that unable longer to endure the curse of monarchical government we aim at founding a republic based on universal suffrage which shall secure to all the intrinsic value of their labour.”

This was the declaration of the Fenian Brotherhood in 1867 to which fenian Brian Dillon pledged his allegiance. It was a truly revolutionary assertion which spoke of universal suffrage, the rights and value of labour and the separation of church and state.

We have long asserted that the chronology of republican history is not simply a timeframe of armed events but of revolutionary ideas that spoke to their generation in terms of genuine liberation both from the Crown and the landed elite.

Fenianism is a revolutionary concept that is now, more than ever, relevant to this generation. It was fenians in the GPO. It was fenians at Kilmichael. It was fenians in the Four Courts when Irishmen used British artillery to dislodge them and it was fenians who attacked the British War Cabinet in Downing Street.

It was also fenians who gave us the 1867 and 1916 Proclamations. They gave us the Declaration of Independence and the Democratic Programme of Dáil Eireann. They gave us the Republican Congress and Eire Nua.

They have passed on the revolutionary template to this generation, but before we attempt to take it up, we must first set out our ideas to demonstrate our suitability for doing so.

The counter revolutionary forces on this island are still in the ascendancy. The so-called Decade of Centenaries is revisionism once again at play. Irish Sovereignty is made subordinate to the political whims of a British politician.

Today the fenian voice must be one for a sovereign democracy as the fundamental basis for an Irish Republic.

Beir Bua!

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