AN ASKEATON man played a central role in a sovereign seal ceremony at the Mansion House in Dublin on Monday last. Billy McGuire, President of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, was involved in the annual turning of the sovereign seal to mark the 94th anniversary of the signing of the sovereign constitution on January 21,1919. He explains that the 1919 document was the constitution used by the sovereign government and Dail Eireann courts to divide landlord estates and give the land back to Irish citizens.
“Eamonn de Valera did not write the 1937 constitution. He went back to the sovereign constitution and, in his own words, he ‘rejigged it’,” says Mr McGuire.
“The 1916 proclamation and the sovereign constitution are the foundation documents of the state The Sovereign Republic of Eire and are owned by the Irish Republican Brotherhood”, he says.
Mr McGuire has carried out the turning of the sovereign seal every January for the last 47 years and this year he attempted to bring Hermann van Rompuy, President of the European Council, and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso to the ceremony.
However, due to the limited capacity of the ceremony, they were unable to attend and Mr McGuire described this as “an absolute shame”, particularly as both men had wanted to attend.
He has called for the 1919 constitution to be put on display in Dublin Castle and says that when Irish people voted for it, it became the uppermost authority in the state.