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First meeting of the North/South body a significant political development – Barry McElduff

4 July, 2012 - by Barry McElduff, Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

Sinn Féin MLA Barry McElduff said that today’s announcement of the establishment of the North/South Inter-Parliamentary Association (NSIPA) is a significant political development.

The West Tyrone MLA is a member of the Executive Committee of NSIPA alongside party colleague TD Caoimhgín Ó Caoláin and other members of the Assembly and Oireachtas.

The Sinn Féin MLA said:

“Today’s meeting is a significant political development and is a realisation of important commitments contained in the Good Friday and St Andrews agreements.

“Meetings of the NSIPA will see MLAs and TDs come together in plenary format to discuss economic and social issues that affect all the people of Ireland.

“In Sinn Féin’s view an island of six million people is too small to have services duplicated and this ‘two system approach’ is a waste of tax payers’ money at a time when there is severe pressure on public expenditure.

“There are many issues which will be better tackled from an all-island approach purely because it makes economic sense.

“In today’s meeting at Stormont we confirmed the speaker of the Assembly and the Ceann Comhairle of the Dáil as co-chairs of the association and we agreed a number of topics for discussion at the first formal meeting of the association that will take place in Dublin in October.

“The association will comprise 50 members in total with the economy, health, tourism, agriculture and European funding all issues that will be on the table at future meetings. We aim to make progress on all these issues which affect everyone on the island of Ireland.” CRÍOCH/END

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