Governments must put effort in to help those who wish to progress – Ford

Alliance Party Leader David Ford will today ask the Prime Minister and Taoiseach to put the same effort into the process that they put in eight years ago – or risk constant political stagnation in Northern Ireland.

David Ford will say: “Nobody will forget the amount of time and effort put in by the Prime Minister and Taoiseach in 1998 to reach a deal. It is now evident that although the principles of that deal have stood the test of time, the institutions have not. We now need the same effort to overcome current difficulties.

“The Governments have expressed their frustration from the sidelines at the lack of progress this month. For those involved in the Committee for Preparation for Government, this frustration can be multiplied ten-fold.

The truth is there were parties blocking progress at every turn, and the way the Secretary of State had set up the Committee allowed them to do so.

“We have emphasised to the Prime Minister and Taoiseach that those who seek to move forward must be allowed by the Governments to do so. There must be no vetoes for obstructive parties.

“We in the Alliance Party are prepared for a full summer of hard work on the issues that count. Victims, reconciliation, the shared future agenda, the costs of segregation and justice reforms are crucial issues that have not yet even been touched upon.

“We want to see every hour of every day used to best effect up until the November deadline to get these issues, and establish a form of devolution which will not keep on collapsing. That applies just as much to the Governments as signatories to the Agreement, as it does to the parties.”


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