Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 4 October 2015

Living with a conundrum

Published 26/06/2008

I read with interest the comments of the Sinn Fein spokesman on their policy with regard to transfer and selection (Belfast Telegraph, June 23).

Without wishing to get involved in the transfer issue, it is important to highlight a point in relation to our current system of government. The spokesman was at pains to justify the Minister's policy on the basis of " the clear policy in the party manifesto to scrap academic selection".

Since the Government comprises an amalgam of parties, which may or may not have deep differences on particular issues, how can the imposition on the whole of society of an individual party or minister's pet concern over the wishes of the majority be democratically justified? If consensus on an issue cannot be reached, there is no democratic mandate.

This is the conundrum of our present system; to deny this is to accept de facto a set of parallel governments, with individual ministers trying to push through legislation against the wishes of others and, possibly, the bulk of the population.

T D Johnston


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