THE Alliance Party has announced that Alan Lawther is to stand for the party in Antrim South East.
Mr Lawther said he was delighted to have been selected as an Alliance candidate. Alan became an active Alliance supporter several years ago after years of not voting, after David Ford helped him with a planning and environmental problem.
Alan said: “Through working with David, I learnt that there can be more to local politics than the constant ‘them and us’ bickering that typifies the usual political debate here.”
Alan worked in several different countries before finally settling back in Northern Ireland, and now has two young children.
“I want a peaceful, stable future for them, and believe Alliance policies offer the best chance for this. Alliance promotes good community relations, and strongly supports the rule of law, condemning criminality and terrorism wherever it comes from,” he said.
“Alliance is also determined to get value for taxpayers’ money and has said that we could save around £1 billion pounds if we had a society that was integrated rather than divided.
“Education is one such area where we waste money. Recently there was huge controversy as we saw the Minister slash education budgets across the boards.
“I am on the PTA committee of the local primary school and find it annoying that so much of the money we raise has to be spent on items that should be considered essential.
“Yet we could save millions for better educational facilities for our children if we had greater integrated education provision.”
Alan trained in chemistry and has a Masters degree in physical chemistry taken at the time research was focusing on the damage being caused to the earth’s ozone layer by aerosols.
“This has given me a lasting concern for protecting our environment and managing our waste effectively,” said Alan.
“I have worked as a teacher in Northern Ireland, helped do commercial pharmaceutical research at Norbrook Laboratories and then in the USA.
“I then worked for the Health Service in England before coming back to work in private industry here. I now run my own small business and hope to bring a wide range of experience to local government in Antrim.
“One of my top priorities will be to try and stop ratepayers’ money being wasted on extravagant projects. Alliance opposed the new council offices which I believe are a waste of money.
“Antrim is unlikely to be a new centre of local government when it is reorganised, and I do not see the value of these new offices.”