27/04/2012

Deputy First Minister Prepared To Give Evidence To Smithwick Tribunal

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinnesssays that he is prepared to give evidence to the Smithwick Tribunal.

He said that “honesty is key to building a shared future and reconciling our people”.

Mr McGuinness said: “Reconciliation is essential between our communities, Republicans and Unionists, and also between my community and the British state. It will not be easy but must happen.

“Republicans realise that dealing with the past will not be an easy process for us – Republicans inflicted much hurt during the conflict, and hurt was inflicted upon Republicans - but if we are to build a new future it is necessary and it is a road that I am not afraid to go down.

“And in my experience of recent years many within the unionist community are up for that journey of reconciliation and dialogue.”

SDLP Leader and South Belfast MP Dr Alasdair McDonnell welcomed his decision to give edidence.

He said: "If we want to build a shared and better society then honesty about the past must prevail. It is only through this that we will be able to achieve reconciliation, equality and properly tackle sectarianism within our communities.

"As we approach 15 years from the Good Friday Agreement in 2013, we need honest and mature reflection on where we are. There is now a queue of outstanding commitments overdue that have still not been delivered upon.

"Political leaders need to be open and honest about what they have done and the work remaining to be done."

(CD)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

16 March 2020
Firm Fined After Man Dies At Livestock Market
A Co Tyrone firm has been fined over the death of a man at a livestock market in Clogher, Co Tyrone. Mr Harry McAnespie died after being struck by a gate at the event in June 2018. Clogher Valley Livestock Producers has since pleaded guilty to one breach of health and safety legislation at Dungannon Court.
19 March 2020
Man Shot In The Leg In L'Derry
A man in his 30s has been shot in the leg in L'Derry. Police say the incident in the Magowan Park area of Creggan on Wednesday night, 18 March, has all the hallmarks of a paramilitary-style attack. The victim has been taken to hospital for treatment.
18 March 2020
Leisure Facilities Closed Across Belfast
Leisure centres and community facilities across Belfast have been closed as measures to combat the spread of coronavirus are ramped up. St George's Market, the Ulster Hall and the ICC Belfast are among those affected. City Hall has closed to the public with tours suspended and the visitor exhibition also closed.
10 March 2020
Other News In Brief
Belfast City Marathon Management Keen To Run Event Organisers of the Belfast City Marathon say they are keen to see the event go ahead.
15 January 2020
Communities Minister: Casement Park Is A Key Priority
Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey has identified the completion of Casement Park as a "key priority" for her department. Deirdre Hargey MLA met with Ulster GAA officials at the west Belfast site to discuss furthering the project. Minister Hargey said she is determined to see the project started as soon as possible.