Sinn Fein’s Michelle Gildernew used a live radio interview on BBC 5 Live to accuse ‘We Deserve Better’ campaigner Dylan Quinn of having a “political agenda”, sparking angry reaction from two Westminster candidates.

Mr. Quinn, who had been behind a series of rallies aimed at highlighting the fact Northern Ireland has been without a functioning government for almost three years, took part in a debate on Tuesday night.

The event at Blakes of the Hollow ahead of next week’s election featured Ms Gildernew and Adam Gannon of the SDLP, both of whom are standing in Fermanagh and South Tyrone.

Other representatives from the Democratic Unionists, Alliance and Ulster Unionists from other constituencies also took part as did Mr. Quinn who expressed his frustration at the lack of devolution.

But during the broadcast, Ms Gildernew hit back at the father-of-four, saying: “Dylan is here; he’s asked a number of questions and made points but Dylan is here and is supporting another candidate.

“He has a political agenda of his own as well”.

“That’s not true,” replied Mr. Quinn.

“You signed her nomination papers,” replied Ms Gildernew.

She was referring to the fact the Enniskillen man was one of a number of people who has signed nomination papers for Caroline Wheeler.

Ms Wheeler is standing in the election as an Independent Labour candidate while Matt Beaumont is contesting the election for the Alliance Party.

Both candidates reacted angrily to Ms Gildernew with Miss Wheeler taking to Facebook to describe the remark as “unreal”.

“How [has] Dylan got blamed for having a political agenda because he signed my nomination form? Our political agenda is being human and wanting the best for us all in this part of the world.

“Self-gratification and egos need to be removed. Alliance/SF/DUP voted in welfare reform in 2015,” she said.

“The rant I heard last night was pathetic,” said Mr. Beaumont.

“Firstly, if someone is standing for election they need to ask a member of the public to stand for election. If someone signs someone's election papers, all this means is that they like that person and are happy for them to stand.

“It does not mean they have political leanings towards the candidate. Fermanagh and South Tyrone deserves far better than that,” he said.