Alliance Leader says Paisley can’t erase 40 years of hurt

On the eve of the departure of Ian Paisley as Leader of the DUP, Alliance Leader David Ford has said that one year of limited progress has not erased 40 years of hurt and hatred.

The South Antrim MLA said: “Ian Paisley was a larger than life figure who threw his weight around often to the detriment of the peace process. The wounds opened during 40 years of hurt and hatred have not yet healed. One year of limited progress is not enough to take this pain away.

“Undoubtedly, his parting will leave a massive gap in unionism and it will be seen as the end of an era. However, in many people’s eyes he may never be able to undo the hurt caused through whipping up tensions during the bad old days.

“I think Ian Paisley tried to re-invent himself as a statesman over the past year; however, people have very long memories. The past year of chuckling has delivered little and the public want more improvements in their every day lives instead of seeing photocalls and media events between the DUP and Sinn Fein.”


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