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Sinn Féin to raise Council discrimination with President

14 June, 2007

Sinn Féin MLA Paul Butler has declared his intention to raise Lisburn Council's shameful record of discrimination against nationalists with President Mary McAleese. She visits Lisburn City Council's Civic Headquarters next week to meet with the Mayor of Lisburn and councillors.

Cllr Butler said:

"Next Monday's visit by the President of Ireland should have been to a local authority that had at last embraced power sharing and partnership politics.

"Unfortunately her visit will be to a Council that is still wedded to a system of political apartheid were discrimination and narrow mindedness are the norm. Lisburn Council are unwilling and incapable of change they are stuck in the past.

"I will be formally welcoming our President to Lisburn, but I will be making her aware that, for the many thousands of residents of Lisburn from a nationalist background, the plain fact of the matter is that Lisburn Council remains a cold house for nationalists.

"Even in this new political dispensation, Lisburn's unionist majority have reiterated their opposition to power-sharing with the largest nationalist party in Lisburn. Lisburn's majority unionist council still refuses to abide by the rulings of the Equality Commission regarding the flying of the union flag, it refuses to implement the European Charter for Minority Languages and continues to have a poor record of employing Catholics." ENDS

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