A former IRA prisoner is to become a new Sinn Féin MLA at Stormont. Rosie McCorley’s nomination comes after the party announced on Monday that Paul Maskey is to stand down as MLA for West Belfast and concentrate on his role as MP.
Sinn Féin ais to hold a selection convention on June 24 to pick the new MLA and the party’s West Belfast Comhairle Ceantair has put the Andersonstown woman’s name forward. The closing date for nominations is June 21, but it’s highly unlikely that there will be any other candidates.
Rosie McCorley has lived West Belfast for most of her life, coming from a republican family. She spent nine years in Maghaberry prison and was released in 1998 under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement.
On release the Gaelgoir worked for republican ex-prisoners’ group Coiste na nIarchimí for eight years, before taking up a post as political adviser with Sinn Féin in 2007 where she has worked with Fra McCann MLA and, more recently, Pat Sheehan MLA.
Meanwhile, Maeve McLaughlin has been sworn in as the new Sinn Féin MLA for Foyle at Stormont.
She is replacing Martina Anderson who has become the party’s MEP in Brussels.
Ms. McLaughlin is currently a councilor for the Northland ward on Derry City Council. She is also the Sinn Féin group leader on the council.
Her priorities for her term in office include developing tourism and the regeneration of the city.
“Whilst I believe that we have many challenges in the city, I believe we have lots of opportunities. I think those opportunities need to be targeted to those most in need,” she said.
Also this week, West Belfast MLA Jennifer McCann replaced Martina Anderson as Sinn Féin junior minister at Stormont.