Graffiti is condemned

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A GRAFFITI attack on a local GAA club has been condemned by both sections of the community.

The sectarian graffiti was sprayed on an outside wall of Clann na Banna club on the Scarva Road last week. But while the actions of those who carried out the attack have been roundly condemned, the work of community representatives to remove the graffiti has been praised.

It is understood the graffiti, which read “UVF 1912 1690”, was removed soon after it was spotted at the club.

Sinn Fein representative John O’Dowd condemned those responsible but acknowledged that such an attack on the local club is an isolated one.

“While there are obvious political undertones to this act of wanton vandalism it was nevertheless an isolated attack on a club which has an enviable record of over a hundred years of good relationships with all sections of the community in Banbridge,” he said.

“The members of Clann na Banna work hard to provide a sporting outlet for the energies of the local youth and are actively involved in building good community relationships through their involvement in cross-community projects.”

A representative of the Unionist community, who worked closely with the club to have the graffiti removed, said, “Graffiti of any kind is unwelcome in Banbridge. It’s nothing but an eyesore and belongs in the past. I was happy to work with local community members to have this graffiti removed and am glad this issue was sorted quickly.”

John O’Dowd called on Unionist politicians to continue to prevent further vandalism.

“The defacing of property is a criminal act and as such it is up to the PSNI to investigate it and deal with the culprits,” said Mr O’Dowd. “There is however a responsibility on all political representatives to do what they can to prevent criminal activity and there is a requisite on local Unionist political representatives to act now to ensure that this isolated incident remains just that, an isolated incident.

“They should use whatever influence they have to prevent further wanton vandalism against the Clann na Banna GAA Club premises or any premises within the district.”

A spokesperson for Clann na Banna was unavailable for comment.