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Best wishes with First Minister

Editor's Viewpoint

Published 01/06/2015

First Minister Peter Robinson appears to be recovering well from a heart attack
First Minister Peter Robinson appears to be recovering well from a heart attack

The Irish Open golf championship had many significant moments, and not the least of these was the appearance of the First Minister, Peter Robinson, who made it to Newcastle to savour the atmosphere only 24 hours after he had left hospital following a heart attack.

He looked relaxed after one of the most difficult weeks of his life, and it was typical of the man that he chose to be part of a major promotional event for Northern Ireland.

The DUP leader speaks frankly in today's Belfast Telegraph about his illness, and about his time in hospital, during which he had three stents inserted.

This was an indication of the potential seriousness of his cardiac condition, and he would be wise to heed the advice of the experts and to try to take things easier.

Mr Robinson admits that his heart scare was brought on by his lifestyle, including his poor diet and lack of exercise.

Politics is not an easy occupation, especially at the top where crucial decisions must be made, and there is little prospect of pleasing everyone.

Northern Ireland has been steamrollered into yet another crisis, which is particularly serious this time, and no doubt Mr Robinson will be following every twist and turn, even if he cannot be there in person as the political logjam reaches almost bursting point.

Peter Robinson is a skilled politician, and his absence will be felt during these knife-edge talks. However, he has put in place an experienced and politically tough group of colleagues who will negotiate ably to try to produce a workable and sustained peace formula.

Mr Robinson's illness should be taken as a wake-up call, and it is also a warning to others whose lifestyles may be unwittingly damaging their health.

Many people nowadays work long hours that don't involve much physical exertion.

However, there is often a price to pay, and it can create a situation where a person's health is at risk.

It is important, therefore, to try to achieve a good lifestyle balance between work and recreation, and it is up to each individual to work this out as best as he or she can.

Mr Robinson has had his warning, and we wish him well with his recovery.

Belfast Telegraph

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