Dickson: Smithwick Report highlights need to deal with the past

Alliance Justice Spokesperson Stewart Dickson MLA has said the Smithwick Report has again highlighted the clear need to deal with the past.

Mr Dickson was speaking ahead of an Assembly Debate on Monday dealing with the fallout from the Smithwick Report – including the reported collusion between as yet unidentified members of the Gardai and the Provisional IRA.

The MLA for East Antrim added that while all lines of inquiry should be followed, the continued working relationship between both Justice Ministers should be welcomed.

Stewart Dickson MLA said: “Contrary to the outrageous views of a few, the vast majority of us are horrified by the report’s conclusions. In light of its findings my Party welcomes the speedy response of the Irish Government in offering an absolute and unqualified apology.

“If there is any evidence that points to a ‘smoking gun’, then all lines of inquiry should be followed and Alliance will support a review of procedures and structures to see where improvements can be made.

“A number of meetings have already taken place between the Justice Ministers, the Chief Constable and the Garda Commissioner and we should be looking ahead to further meetings and the implementation of the report’s recommendations.

“While some have said we should just draw a line under these events, this report has again highlighted that whilst the exploration of the past may be painful and uncomfortable, it cannot be avoided if we are to address with integrity the needs of those bereaved and injured, and learn lessons from our past – both of which are key to building a stable and shared future.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *