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Stormont model would work in Republic of Ireland

As the political system in the Republic of Ireland went into meltdown over the weekend, it struck me that at this point we really should be talking about a new form of governance rather than a new government.

As we are fast approaching the centenary of the 1916 Rising, Ireland appears to be a nation badly in need of "regaining independence" -- this time from the IMF!

Having visited the Northern Ireland Assembly in Stormont some years ago, I was struck by the fact that all parties got to contribute in a constructive way to policy making. Clearly the Republic's system of having an opposition is both negative and, to date, ineffective.

Wouldn't it be better if TDs actually worked together constructively to get the country out of the current mess?

It is with great concern that I witness the events in Dail Eireann over these past few days. People who I speak to in my area are despairing of the self-serving actions of our political representatives.

May I suggest that a comprehensive and forthright address be given in Dail Eireann to the nation and the joint houses of the Oireachtas by our head of state, President McAleese, as was done in 1999 during the 'good times'.

Such an address, I believe, would offer some flicker of light to a despairing nation and help bring some perspective and guidance to our elected representatives prior to a general election campaign that already has all the signs of a political 'faction fight'.

I have spent 35 years as a primary teacher trying to instill in the children a sense of their many talents and opportunities that await them, their civic duty, love of their culture and language and an inclusive Christian attitude toward all who they meet in life.

As is written in many an old Irish song "it grieves me full sore" to meet many past pupils in recent times at their Australian, Canadian and, most recently, Argentine 'wakes'. They are leaving against their will and with a deep sense of anger at having been 'evicted' by their own. Shame on all of us.

Julie Scully, Ballybrittas, Co Laois

Belfast Telegraph


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