North Down Supports Agreement

Former North Down Alliance Candidate, Stephen Farry, has congratulated Lady Sylvia Hermon on her election as MP for North Down, and described her victory as a clear indication of support for the Good Friday Agreement.

Stephen Farry said:

“I have congratulated Lady Hermon on a stunning and historic victory in North Down.”

“Through standing aside from this North Down race, Alliance turned it into a straight contest between the ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ stances on the Agreement. The people of North Down delivered a clear indication of their overwhelming support for moving forward on the basis of the Agreement.”

“This victory has been secured through the votes of not only traditional Ulster Unionists, but thousands of Alliance supporters, alongside those of the Women’s Coalition and even some Nationalists. Lady Hermon has a clear mandate to not only work for the full implementation of the Agreement and to protect it from external threats.”

“The Alliance strategy was the right thing to do, but was nevertheless a major risk in that voting Unionist would be a huge leap for many people fundamentally wedded to cross-community politics, and accordingly some people would react negatively to be denied such a choice in the polls.”

“However, the Westminster Result shows that the overall turnout did not drop, there was few spoilt ballots, and the SDLP vote, rather than picking up Alliance votes, actually fell. This indicates that while some Alliance voters may have stayed at home, the overwhelming number voted tactically for Lady Hermon.”

“Furthermore, the preliminary indications from the Council Elections show that Alliance that support is holding up well and that voters have remained loyal to the Party, and view the Westminster move as a one-off.”

“I regard this as a powerful vindication of the Alliance approach. Rather than committing political suicide, as Bob McCartney had hoped, Alliance is re-energised in North Down and looking forward to contesting the next Westminster election.”


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