Minister has no commitment to integration

Row over football anthems underlines lack of progress on sectarianism and integration

The Workers Party is asking Sports Minister Caral Ni Chuilin whether or not she understands the basics of the ‘Shared Future’ policy, promoted by her party and the DUP and whether she intends to continue discharge her responsibilities in such a petty and immature manner.

The condemnation comes from the Party’s east Belfast representative Kevin McNally in the wake of the Minister’s announcement that she will attend the Northern Ireland v Faroe Islands European group stage match at Windsor Park, but only after  the national anthems have been played.

“When Executive Ministers – including Edwin Poots whose behaviour at a GAA match was equally immature - resort to these arrangements to attend a football match, what does it say about the commitment by the Executive to a Shared Future?”, Mr McNally asked

 “The reality, and this illustrates it all too clearly, is that the SF/DUP Executive have no commitment to promoting an integrated society in Northern Ireland and instead are operating a divisive and discordant policy of ‘separate but equal’.

“This ensures the continuation of segregation and division as the norm in Northern Ireland and we should not at all be surprised when that division ultimately manifests itself in the type of sectarian riots which we have witnessed in East Belfast this summer”, said Mr McNally.

“This is a perfect example of what the Workers Party has described as ‘institutionalised sectarianism’ which the current Executive arrangements at Stormont perpetuate and which requires urgent change if we are ever to move towards the new type of Northern Ireland society which the Good Friday Agreement envisaged and which the people voted for” concluded Mr McNally.  

Issued 26th July 2011

Peace, Work, Democracy & Class Politics