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Our self-serving politicians' betrayal of the Good Friday Agreement cannot be allowed to stand

Letter of the day: election hopes

I've spent all 20 of my years of life in this odd little place we know as Northern Ireland. Discounting the first 15 years, where learning to walk and talk took most my focus, I lived blissfully unaware of the Troubles and squabbles this nation endured.

But, as I've grown older, I've become fascinated with the divisions of our country. I wanted to find the answers in school, but there remains an odd truth with Northern Ireland: there are questions which simply are not allowed to be asked.

This year, we celebrate 19 years of the Good Friday Agreement, an agreement which sought a new future of hope for the next generation: my generation. The aspirations which were outlined in that agreement sought to guarantee a peaceful, stable and progressive Northern Ireland.

The hope that the agreement symbolised was simple: our political and religious division was not enough to be an obstacle to peace. David Trimble and John Hume embodied the altruism which our political leaders should exhibit. They made political sacrifices for the common good, not simply their own personal interests.

All of this simply pushes the real issues of fixing our failing healthcare system, leaving victims to suffer without knowing the truth and leaving my generation to feel we have no choice but to leave home. It infuriates me that instead of compelling our talented young generation, we leave them ostracised from their home.

This is where I struggle with the current state of affairs; we simply no longer send representatives to Stormont to serve our interests; we send them to embody the sectarian headcount which each election devolves into and increasingly to serve themselves.

We've the chance to put the country back in the direction of hope in the coming election and the opportunity to break this cycle of poor governance.

We have the opportunity to change, because if we do not, I genuinely fear where our country will go.

JAMES CARSON

Belfast

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