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My fear killer will get pension, by daughter of train IRA bomb victim


Jayne Olorunda

Jayne Olorunda

Mandatory Credit Darren Kidd/Pre

Sinn Fein MLA Orlaithi Flynn

Sinn Fein MLA Orlaithi Flynn

Jayne Olorunda

The daughter of a man killed in an IRA blast on a train has claimed her elderly mother would be excluded from a proposed victims' pension scheme while the IRA terrorist whose bomb killed her father would be eligible - because he was injured but survived.

Jayne Olorunda was just two when her father Max died after a Provisional IRA incendiary device detonated on a train from Ballymena to Belfast in January 1980.

The blast engulfed a carriage killing her father, as well as 17-year-old student Mark Cochrane and one of the bombers, Kevin Delaney (26).

There were five people injured, including the other bomber, Patrick Flynn (24).

Flynn was tried at Belfast Crown Court for double manslaughter and possession of explosives after his recovery from his burns.

He was sentenced to 10 years in prison for each count of manslaughter, as well as seven years for the explosives offences, to be served concurrently.

Flynn's daugher Orlaithi has been co-opted as a Sinn Fein MLA for West Belfast to replace the outgoing Jennifer McCann.

For Jayne Olorunda, the news convinced her it was time for her to leave Northern Ireland for good.

And yesterday she hit out at the proposal for victims' pension, which she felt could be paid out to her father's killer, while excluding her still-grieving mother Gabrielle (66).

"Alongside the innocent people who deserve the pension, the perpetrators would be classed in the same category and avail of the pension too," Jayne said.

"This is outrageous; I have not heard of anything like this anywhere else in the civilised world.

"If I use the train bomb as an example, the ramification would be that the killer would get the pension, but my mother, his victim, would not.

"If anyone feels that this is acceptable on any level - believe me, certain people here do - then, for me, they condone the loss of innocent lives."

She added: "I think people would be horrified if they knew that bombers, gunmen and members of a terrorist organisation could potentially receive the small reparation that I hope was planned for the innocents."

Belfast Telegraph