New Sinn Féin President-Elect has been confirmed

Mary Lou McDonald the current deputy leader of Sinn Féin is expected to be the next president of the party

TWO-THIRDS OF voters have said that Mary Lou McDonald's leadership of Sinn Féin would not make them more likely to vote for the party.

"I know I have big shoes to fill taking on the role from Gerry Adams and I know that is impossible but I have brought my own shoes and together, with all of the party membership, we will walk on a journey that will lead to Irish unity".

She told party members Saturday that she "won't fill Gerry's shoes".

"This is also my last Ard Fheis as Uachtaran Sinn Fein - I will be asking the incoming Ard Comhairle to agree a date in 2018 for a special Ard Fheis to elect a new Uachtaran".

Gerry Adams has been leader of Sinn Féin since 1983, and announced his intention to stand down past year. The 69-year-old is a key figure in the Irish republican movement, which seeks to take Northern Ireland out of the U.K. and unite it with the Republic of Ireland.

"If you wanted this job, you're too late", Mr Adams quipped as he introduced his successor.

Mary Lou McDonald was originally a member of the Fianna Fáil party before joining Sinn Féin.

"In my view, this is not good for anyone expect a small minority of bigots" he said.

"We have to challenge ourselves and our support base". We also have to challenge unionism.

Mr. Adams said: "Standing still is not an option, we are agents of change".

"Whether the upcoming talks succeed or not in the short term, there is no merit in Sinn Fein disengaging from the conversations and dialogue with unionists and others that is necessary - in whatever format is appropriate in the time ahead". We are agents for change and it is up to us to find the ways and means to create more of this positive change.

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