Sinn Féin MLA Willie Clarke to Concentrate on Council Role
Sinn Féin MLA Willie Clarke has announced that he is to give up his Assembly seat in order to concentrate on Down District Council.
Mr Clarke said,
“Sinn Féin has a policy of eradicating double jobbing in terms of public representation and in view of this policy I have opted to give up my Assembly seat in order to concentrate on the local Council.
“This was a very difficult decision to make and in conjunction with my family I have decided that continuing my work through the local council is the best option for myself.
“It has been an honour to represent the people of South Down in the Assembly and I would like to thank everyone who has assisted me in that endeavour. I would also like to thank my Sinn Féin colleagues for their support throughout my term and allowing me the option to choose which arena I would continue my political representation.
“There is a great challenge in Down District Council over the next two years, the task of shaping the out workings of RPA and I want to be part of that challenge. I will utilise my Assembly experience to help Sinn Féin to be at the forefront of these changes. I personally want to dedicate more time to community initiatives, which will require more on the ground involvement.
Sinn Féin Assembly group leader Raymond McCartney added,
“I am sorry that Willie Clarke has decided to leave the assembly and I would like to thank him for his considerable contribution to the Sinn Féin Assembly project.
“Willie Clarke has made a huge impression in the Assembly and has the respect of not only his Sinn Féin colleagues but also his political opponents and the staff in Stormont for his courteous manner and diligence in representing his constituency.
“I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Sinn Féin Assembly team to wish Willie well and look forward to working with him in his capacity as a Councillor in moving the Sinn Féin project forward."