Renua Ireland held a protest outside the Hq of Amnesty this morning and in an open letter to Colm O'Gowman called on him to resign.
RENUA IRELAND OPEN LETTER TO COLM O’ GORMAN
RENUA Ireland are today requesting with regret, your resignation as Executive Director.
We believe your immediate resignation is justified by the disrepute you have brought this organisation into.
The unhealthy dependence of Amnesty International on the largesse of foreign billionaires which has developed during your term of office is of itself alone a source of grave unease to believers in independent human rights bodies.
However, your Trump-like response to the Standards in Public Office (SIPO) request that you return these donations represents a dangerous act of insolence and an attack on the integrity of one of the key protectors of Irish democracy.
You would do well to remember that SIPO evolved because of an era where political figures such as Charles Haughey believed themselves to be above the law.
Even by appearing to follow in their footsteps you do grave damage to the concept of ethics in public life.
SIPO is, even with flaws a designated independent watchdog of the state.
By attempting to muzzle or silence its bark you return us implicitly to an era we thought had passed.
It is gone past time Colm that you realized that even if you hold the high impressive sounding title of Executive Director you are not above the law.
Amnesty International exists to protect the role of Ethics in political and public life.
Within Ireland SIPO is one of the key pillars of ensuring an ethical political system survives.
Your claim that the legislation has been “weaponised” against several campaigning and advocacy organisations, is not just facile. It is nothing more than a politically self-interested and uncouth attempt to undermine a respected institution of the state.
One of the pillar features of any functioning democracy is that no organisation has the right to arrogate to itself the decision on whether it will obey a directive from a statutory body.
Amnesty International’s attitude in this regard is the ethical equivalent of engaging in the sort of semi-constitutional politics that wrought such harm upon this state in so many different ways.
Under the current Executive Director, we are concerned that Amnesty International has lost its way in one other key fashion.
Amnesty International was originally to preserve the lives of the oppressed and unrepresented.
This means that if anything, Amnesty ought to be pro-life.
Instead Amnesty, on the pillar issue of the human rights of the unborn, means you are now perceived to be a wolf in sheep’s clothing and a closet advocacy group for an industrialised, multinational driven, abortion industry.
RENUA Ireland believes the proposal to Repeal the Eighth represents the greatest proposed violation of human rights in the history of the Irish state.
We believe it represents only the end of the beginning of a planned programme to introduce unrestricted abortion in the state.
It is the poisoned fruit of a conspiracy of advocacy groups, opportunistic politicians and media outlets who believe it is progressive to deny human rights to the voiceless and those with a potential disability.
The decision of Amnesty International, under your direction, to act as a well-paid advocacy group for such disreputable groups means your status can only damage our democracy and degrade the concept of human rights in many people’s eyes.
Your immediate departure would at least do a little to repair the damage you have done.
John Leahy, Party Leader, Renua Ireland