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Speaker Marks Irish Language Week for the First Time in Parliament Buildings

Session: Session currently unavailable

Date: 10 March 2020

Reference: SO 05/19/20

The Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Alex Maskey MLA, today welcomed young people from three local schools to Parliament Buildings as part of Seachtain na Gaelige (Irish Language Week)—one of the biggest annual international festivals celebrating Irish language and culture.

Pupils from Scoil Éanna, Bunscoil Phobail Feirste, and Coláiste Feirste along with Dr Niall Comer, President of Conradh na Gaelige, came to Parliament Buildings for the celebration with songs and recitation.

Speaking at the event, the Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly said, “I am delighted to welcome everyone to mark Seachtain na Gaelige here in Parliament Buildings. It is vital for the future that this Assembly and this building itself are seen to be open to every part of our society, including the thousands of Irish language speakers.

“I want to use the Speaker’s role to do what I can to ensure that every part of our diverse community feels that the Assembly is accessible and takes account of their interests.

“I am hosting a number of events this month and within that programme it is important to me to host this event to officially mark Seachtain na Gaelige. It is the first time any Speaker has done so.

“During all of the events for Seachtain na Gaelige, many people will express their passion for the language they use every day. Others will reawaken their interest in the Irish language and others will approach it for the first time.

“This emphasises that regardless of whatever political debates take place at the Assembly, during Seachtain na Gaelige we are celebrating a cherished language, a culture, and an identity which is entitled to the same respect as any other.”

ENDS

Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Alex Maskey MLA celebrates Seachtain na Gaelige with Dr Niall Comer, President of Conradh na Gaelige, and pupils from Scoil Éanna, Bunscoil Phobail Feirste, and Coláiste Feirste.

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