letter of the day: Dominion status could be ideal way out of current gridlock and give NI people more hope for future
THE EU says that the people of Northern Ireland can choose to be British, Irish or both. The choice of independence is disallowed, principally as it would not be supported by the British or Irish Governments.
The Good Friday Agreement, therefore, was not a framework for full self-determination. In a similar way, Spanish law forbids Catalonia full self-determination.
If the people of Northern Ireland were to be offered dominion status, instead of remaining in gridlock with the present arrangements, would dominion status gain favour? It would, firstly, need to be argued for and then put to the electorate. A new framework for Northern Ireland governance could include an adaption of constitutional frameworks from overseas.
The parties should look at relevant parts of constitutional frameworks from Indonesia, Luxembourg, Singapore or even the United States that could be applied here post-Brexit.
In modern Northern Ireland, a consensus for the common good must be strived for. One aim for NI parties might be to set up a financial centre in Belfast post-Brexit, adopting the Singapore model. But it would require new political structures, which, through weighted majority voting, would circumvent any one party having a veto on progress. If a new 'NI First' party was mooted, it would take a few years and a lot of money to gain traction.
If an existing party were to reinvent itself, then playing the 'NI First' card could attract floating voters from all sides.