Alliance depressed by poverty of ambition coming from OFMDFM on a shared future

Alliance OFMDFM spokesperson Chris Lyttle MLA has said that Peter Robinson must acknowledge the failings in OFMDFM’s announcements for their plans for a shared future. He was speaking after Robinson ignored criticism of the announcements rather than providing details about OFMDFM’s plans for a shared future.

Chris Lyttle MLA said: “We are becoming depressed by the poverty of ambition coming from OFMDFM on their plans for a shared future. The plans that were outlined last week fall well short of what is needed to deliver a genuine shared future for everyone.

“The First Minister has failed to show how the working group that he has proposed to deal with issues like flags, parades and the past differs from a similar proposal from the Alliance Party that he arrogantly dismissed three months ago. I would ask that he would retract his arrogant dismissal of the Alliance Party proposal to establish an all-party working group with an independent chair, now that he appears to have passed off our proposal as his own.

“If he believes that it is fundamentally wrong that we segregate our young people on the basis of religion at the earliest age, why is there no mention of integrated education in the plans he announced last week?

“Does he really believe that these proposals, 10 shared education campuses and two week summer camps, can in any way credibly claim to be the most ambitious plans for a shared future or that they will deliver radical change to the education system which he says is fundamentally wrong.

“If he is keen to work towards a shared future, he is going the wrong way about it by being so dismissive of others. There was not much sharing in the comments that he made in the Assembly today.

“Where are the details in his plans, what will the budget be for all the proposals, how will this working group resolve the issues around flags, parades and the past? These questions were all raised, yet none were answered. All we got were dismissive comments that did nothing to reassure those with genuine concerns about these plans.”


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