“The Fine Gael/Labour coalition has lost its mandate and now clings to power, imposing policies that are alienating huge numbers of citizens, as it stumbles from one political crisis to another.
“May’s Local and European election results were a clear message that the government needed to change political direction but they refused to listen.
“The over-riding theme of the Fine Gael/Labour coalition has been a deeply unfair economic policy.
“It has imposed destructive austerity measures on struggling families and vulnerable citizens. Its budgets have been among the most regressive in the state’s history.
“The imposition of domestic water charges in the face of huge public opposition is the final straw for many.
“In the year ahead, Sinn Féin will continue to fight the water charges until they are scrapped.
“As we head into 2015, Irish society faces a choice between the failed politics of the conservative parties who have ruled the 26-County State since the 1920s – or a genuine republican alternative that offers the prospect of radical political change.
“In the North, the most vulnerable have been protected against Tory welfare and budget cuts. Progress has also been made with regard to the issues of flags, the past and parading.
“But much more needs to be done. The British and Irish Governments have failed to deliver on commitments such as a Bill of Rights, Acht na Gaeilge, and an inquiry into the killing of Pat Finucane and other matters.
“However, the Stormont House Agreement demonstrates that with the five main parties acting together, significant progress can be made to safeguard the most vulnerable and rebuild the reputation of the political institutions.
“As we look forward to a new year Sinn Féin will continue to work towards a United Ireland and a new republic which cherishes all identities and puts the interests of citizens first.
“For now, I wish you all a Happy and Peaceful New Year.
”Bliain úr faoi mhaise daoibh go léir.”