By Shaun Casey
JANE Adams insists the ‘Gaels le Chéile’ campaign is still going strong, despite having “slowed up a wee bit,” but the team is still working hard to get the GAA’s say on a “better Ireland.”
The movement, started by Adams and former Antrim footballer Paddy Cunningham two years ago, is to encourage the Irish government to prepare for an Irish unity referendum in the near future.
The two Antrim legends have written a letter to the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, with over 15,000 signatures to include the GAA in any future discussions.
“Over Covid you had a wee bit of time on your hands but I’m very busy now and Paddy’s the same but we’re still trucking on with it,” said Adams. “We have over 15,000 signatures now and that doesn’t just take in Ulster, that’s right across the board.
“We sent the letter to the Taoiseach (last Thursday) so now we’re waiting to see what our next steps are and then hopefully take a wee bit of time to actually give it the real big push that it deserves.”
It’s not the first time they’ve sent the letter off. The pair initially delivered a letter with 3,000 signatures included back in 2021 but received no response form then Taoiseach Micheál Martin.
“He didn’t acknowledge it, but we don’t stop there,” added Adams. “I think the GAA is well placed in every community the length and breadth of Ireland and there’s already many strands of civic society that are adding to this.
“So, why not have the GAA involved? The way we did it was to go gael on gael, and the reason we did it that way was because within a club you can have many different political persuasions or have none so that was the best way for us to attack it.
“It may have slowed up a wee bit, but we have to take into consideration the amount of people that we have got involved and we have got a really good sense that this could go even further.”
It’s not just Ulster Gaels that are getting behind the initiative and Adams insists the more it’s talked about, the more people will want to get involved.
“I went to Kenya, and I was talking to loads of people when I was out there, the likes of Niamh O’Sullivan and Aidan O’Shea, Aisling Thompson and whenever you’re speaking to people, they’re all in support of you but they want to know more.
“They say, I’m not living it, I haven’t lived it, can you tell me more? So, I think it’s all about the chat and unless we’re talking about it, you’re not being educated about it and you don’t know.
“The more chatting and the more talking about things, the better, as the support is definitely there.
“Anybody I have asked to sign or even to do a video for our social media has been very responsive and of course we want a united Ireland, of course we want a better Ireland. Whenever you say a better Ireland, I think that’s what pricks peoples ears up.”