More than 3,000 pro-life marchers packed Castlebar Co Mayo the home of Taoiseach Enda Kenny on Saturday Nov 3rd, in one of the largest rallies seen there. The pro-life marchers who came from all corners of Ireland North, South, East and West descended on Castlebar Co Mayo to call on the Taoiseach to keep the pro-life promise Fine Gael made during Election 2011.
The rally organisers, Mayo Life Network and Mayo Youth Defence, said that the huge turnout showed that people wanted to send a powerful message to an Taoiseach, with a reminder that he must listen to the pro-life majority and reject attempts to foist abortion on Ireland.
The colourful Rally was led by a banner held by twenty young women calling on Enda Kenny to 'Keep his Pro-Life Promise' and featured hundreds of Mayo flags bearing the message 'Pro-Life'. The rally jeep pumped out music as the crowd marched through Castlebar to the Mall where they were addressed by pro-life speakers.
Spokeswoman for the Mayo Life Network, Claire Philbin, said that; “Fine Gael declared to the electorate in early 2011 that they were a pro-life party who would not legislate for abortion. This promise most certainly contributed to their success in that election, where, for example, in Mayo alone they took 4 seats. The thousands who came to Castlebar today are now demanding that Enda Kenny sticks to that pro-life commitment, and rejects the external pressures that are being applied to Ireland to legalise abortion.
Addressing the Rally, Niamh Uí Bhriain of the Life Institute said that Ireland was "proud to be a pro-life nation, proud to be a people that stand for life."
"And if Fine Gael thinks that they're being inundated with pro-life phone calls now, let us tell assure them that we've only just got started," she added. "Because the lives of our children are worth fighting for. Their mothers, driven to abortion in fear and panic, are worth fighting for. And the pro-life ethos of this country is worth fighting for," she told the crowd.
"So we stand together today, as we will stand together again and again, and in growing numbers, until our government acknowledges that we, the people, do not want abortion, not now, not ever, not in our country and not in our name," she said.
The Rally is being organised in anticipation of the recommendations from the so-called 'Expert Group', put together earlier this year as a response to the European Court's ruling on Ireland’s abortion laws. The composition of the expert group has been called into question in several quarters, most recently by Senator Jim Walsh when he told the Seanad that there were ‘known abortion advocates’ selected for the group.
see Youth Defence website for full report