Political football - Finn Harps stadium project becomes general election issue in Donegal

After election Sinn Féin TD wants incoming Minister, the Finn Harps Board and all five Donegal TDs to seek an immediate resolution to the issue

Political football - Finn Harps stadium project become general election issue in Donegal

The proposed new stadium in Stranorlar

The on-going saga regarding Finn Harps' planned new stadium is becoming a general election issue in Donegal.

Sinn Fein Deputy Pearse Doherty has now called on the Government and on Transport, Tourism and Sport Minister Shane Ross to immediately reverse the decision not to provide further funding for the planned new ground in Stranolar.

The Sinn Féin Finance Spokesperson was speaking following last week’s decision by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport to exclude the Stranorlar Stadium from their funding list for 2020.

Speaking this afternoon, Deputy Doherty said: “I am disgusted at the actions of the Minister Ross and his Department, and their exclusion of the new Finn Harps Stadium for the funding list for 2020. This decision is disappointing in the extreme and it is yet another sign that this Government places the people of Donegal at the bottom of their list of priorities.

“During the last few years, much work and effort has been put into this project by the club and its directors, and they have worked diligently to ensure that the club met all provisions and recommendations set out by the Department to ensure the project would proceed this year."

He said the development of the stadium is vital for the future of senior soccer in Donegal, and the rejection of the funding application "is a real kick in the teeth".

He has now written to Minister Ross to request that he review this decision without delay.

He added: "In addition, if I am fortunate enough to be re-elected in three weeks time, I have committed that my first action will be to organise a meeting between the incoming Minister, the Finn Harps Board and all five Donegal TDs to seek an immediate resolution to this issue.

“The sporting community in Donegal needs immediate clarity on the future of this project. The new Stadium has the potential to be a top class facility that will ensure the future is bright for soccer in the county."

“We must now ensure that funding for the project is secured, work begins again in earnest, and Ollie Horgan, the club and its supporters can concentrate on other important matters, such as keeping the club in the Premier Division for 2021," he concluded.

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