O’Dowd leadership challenge is a watershed for Sinn Féin
In a party whose leaders are anointed, rather than contested, the challenge to O’Neill may signal a move towards more democratic principles
In a surprise move last weekend, Sinn Féin heavyweight John O’Dowd announced in a tweet that he would challenge Michelle O’Neill for the vice-presidency of the party at the November ard fheis.
Ordinarily, within a political party any announcement of a leadership challenge barely raises an eyebrow, being simply part of the cut and thrust of politics. For Sinn Féin, though, this is a watershed moment.
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