BY CHRIS MCNULTY
FOR the fourth month in succession, Naomh Ultan brought to county committee’s attention allegations that some forty-nine children residing in the parish of Killaghtee – their club’s catchment area – are registered with St Naul’s and Killybegs.
A sub-committee has been appointed to explore the matter, but has yet to make a determination and Terence McGinley, the Naomh Ultan delegate, slammed the lack of haste.
“I have to raise this again; I have no option because the club is putting pressure on me to raise the question,” he said.
“This is going on and there is nothing that I know of being done about it.”
Chairman Sean Dunnion strongly refuted a suggestion that there was nothing being done.
The appointed sub-committee comprises Donegal Vice-Chairman Denis Ellis, Development Officer Michael McMenamin and Ulster Council delegate Brendan Kelly.
Mr Dunnion said: “The committee met twice and has corresponded with the clubs. One of the clubs has returned the correspondence. The other was to have their correspondence submitted by Friday, but it hasn’t arrived yet. We expect the to submit it in the next couple of days and it will be dealt with.”
However, the Naomh Ultan chairman was vexed at the drawn out debacle.
He said: “This committee was set up two months ago. Another year has gone now. Last year we went through this. We sent in a list of players – the same as we’ve done this year – and yet nothing has happened.
“We’re going through it again and it looks like we’re at a stone wall again. Can anyone here tell me that other clubs can register players living in another club’s area? Is this not straightforward? Why should there be an investigation? Seven weeks have gone by now and nothing has been done.
“We’re sitting here now with our youngsters being registered with two other clubs – Killybegs and St Naul’s. There is something badly wrong if this can go on. We have identified 49 youngsters living in our club area that are registered with St Naul’s and Killybegs.”
For the first time since the issue was raised by Naomh Ultan, one of the other clubs addressed the matter on Monday night as Killybegs Chairman John Cunningham sought to clarify his club’s position.
“There is a figure of thirty players that we are alleged to be using. We have registered 29 players and fourteen of them are girls. The ladies come under a different governorship. That’s almost half of them and, as far as I’m aware, Naomh Ultan have no ladies team,” he said.
“We have three minors, we have three Under-14s, we have two Under-10s and we have five Under-8s whose first club hasn’t been determined yet. Some of these children on the list are as young as four. The reason they’re on the list is because they’d have been registered on a family membership. It’s not wholly accurate what is being said.
“We sent correspondence to the county management committee last October and, as of today, we have not had any return correspondence.”
Mr McGinley noted that the ladies in question should still be registered with Naomh Ultan.
Mr Cunningham said that it was ‘members’, rather than ‘players’, as has been reported, that were under question, although the Naomh Ultan delegate has referenced ‘players’ in relation to a list of names his club has submitted to the county board.
Mr McGinley added: “We are not in conflict. We are standing up for the rights of the Naomh Ultan club.”
There appears no quick fix solution to what has become a thorny and now monthly issue at county committee. Mr Dunnion added: “We have tried to mediate and it hasn’t work. It isn’t going to be as simple as a swipe of a pencil that will sort this out.”
Posted: 10:30 am August 2, 2014