Election of National Officers
- An Cathaoirleach (Chair) Brian Leeson
- Leas-Chathaoirleach (Vice-Chair) Rab Jackson
- An Rúnaí Ginearálta (General Secretary) Breandán Mac Cionnaith
- Cisteoirí (Treasurers) Micheál Mac Neighill and Ciarán Heaphey
- An tOifigeach Caidrimh Phoiblí (Public Relation Officer) Pádraig Ó Meiscill
Donal Fallon of the student organisation Free Education for Everyone gave the assembled crowd a brief rundown on FEE’s campaign of resistance to student fees. He explained that the recent student protests in Dublin, Belfast and Derry had led to FEE setting up new branches in a number of third level institutions across the country. Donal finished by expressing his hope that these developments may signal the emergence of a new radical student movement.
The chairperson of the Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign Freda Hughes impressed upon the Ard-Fheis the importance of developing an international grassroots campaign of opposition to Israeli oppression of the Palestinian people. She highlighted the role that everyone has to play in boycotting Israeli goods and building pressure for divestment from Israel.
The last of the guest speakers, Pepe Gutiérrez from the Latin America Solidarity Centre, provided a unique perspective of the current economic crisis, proposing that the Latin American experience of the IMF in the 1980s and 1990s could prove useful to Irish activists today. This theme of mutual solidarity and co-operation was repeated throughout his contribution. Pepe concluded by encouraging people to have hope and belief in their ability to win through in the end. Other guests who attended the Ard-Fheis included representatives from the Communist Party of Ireland, the Workers Solidarity Movement, Kurdistan National Congress, and the Cuba Solidarity Group.
Following on from the guest speakers Leas-Chathaoirleach éirígí Rab Jackson read aloud a message of solidarity from the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. éirígí Dublin City Councillor Louise Minihan then read out a message from the Cuban Ambassador to Ireland, Teresita Trujillo. Solidarity greetings were also sent to An Ard-Fheis by the Workers Party of New Zealand, Izquierda Castellana and the Peace And Neutrality Alliance. Click here to read the full text of all solidarity greetings