DUP canvasser criticized for “horrible smear” of Sinn Féin

Posted By: May 04, 2017

Candidate John Finucane

John Finucane, one of the north’s most prominent lawyers and son of murdered solicitor 
Pat Finucane, is standing in North Belfast for Sinn Féin. Picture by Hugh Russell

John Monaghan. Irish News. Belfast. Thursday, May 4, 2017

Dale Pankhurst, who is canvassing for 
DUP MP Nigel Dodds. Picture from Twitter

A prominent DUP member who is canvassing for North Belfast MP Nigel Dodds has been criticized for a tweet described as a “horrible smear” on Sinn Féin candidate John Finucane. 

Mr. Finucane’s father, Pat, was shot dead by the UFF in front of his young family at his Belfast home in February 1989.

His youngest son, also a leading solicitor, is a long-time campaigner for a public inquiry into state collusion in the murder.

Dale Pankhurst, a former chairman of the DUP’s North and West Belfast youth branch, claimed in a tweet on Tuesday that Mr. Finucane was “continuing the family legacy by attempting to demonize the British security forces.”

In a separate blog, he said that the Finucane “family name has often been associated with victim status.”

“The continued publicity around this campaign has probably given some bright spark within Sinn Féin the idea to use the Finucane name and claim victim status.”

One social media user described the remarks as a “horrible smear of John and the suffering of his family.”

The DUP and Sinn Féin did not respond to a request for comment from The Irish News.