Francie Molloy apologises but Ian McCrea says MP should stand down over IRA sex abuse tweet

Sinn Fein's Mid Ulster MP Francie Molloy wants the Department of Education to review CCMS proposals to close a number of rural schools

Sinn Fein's Mid Ulster MP Francie Molloy wants the Department of Education to review CCMS proposals to close a number of rural schools

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Sinn Féin MP Francie Molloy has “apologised for any offence” caused by a social media post he made over a BBC programme on the alleged sexual abuse carried out by an IRA man.

But the DUP’s Ian McCrea has called for the MP to stand down over the remark.

If any other Member of Parliament made such comments, they would rightly be withdrawing their statement, apologising and stepping down from public office

The tweet which was later removed by the veteran republican, read:“Another load of rubbish on spotlight tonight. Joint Indo bluesh...production”.

In a statement, he said: “I apologise for any offence my post caused to Paudie McGahon or any victim of abuse.

“I hope that justice is served and the appropriate support delivered to Mr McGahon.

“Sinn Féin’s priority is to support victims of abuse whether that abuse is historical or contemporary and we will support victims in their efforts to get truth and justice.”

Mid Ulster MLA Ian McCrea said he should go further: “If any other Member of Parliament made such comments, they would rightly be withdrawing their statement, apologising and stepping down from public office. SF should not only cooperate with the authorities regarding how abusers were moved from one jurisdiction to another but they should also deal with their Mid Ulster MP by asking him to step down.”