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What we could all pick up from Ulster Rugby

A comparison between the success of Ulster Rugby and Northern Ireland is striking. Four years ago, Ulster Rugby published a goal: to be the best rugby club in Europe.

It appointed two of the most appropriate managers possible, it looked inside and outside and brought in the best ideas, best performers and clearly defined the team's goals, which all team members - players, administrators, coaches and supporters - bought into.

The club worked incredibly hard to get the desired results, made no excuses, explained their plans, actions and decisions, and had an integrity we all respected. They are a winning team, bringing respect, prosperity and pride to Ulster.

Fourteen years after the Good Friday Agreement, Northern Ireland still has set no clearly defined vision and no goals. Instead, we have an ill-defined hope for a shared future for everyone, a future of prosperity, peace and opportunity. There was - is - nothing binding everyone.

Political manifestos and Programmes for Government are no substitute for vision, leadership and achievement. The current anarchy in the streets is a direct consequence of the lack of coherent leadership, ability (or willingness) to sell the idea of sharing the community in Northern Ireland.

If our political masters looked outside and brought in the best ideas and implemented them, then we might avoid future, pointless waste and destruction.


Belfast City Council

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