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Culture Minister urged to "be decisive" over Long Kesh site - McElduff MLA

20 February, 2008

Sinn Féin MLA Barry McElduff, who is also chair of the Assembly Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee, has urged the Culture Minister to be decisive and bring a paper to the Executive over the Long Kesh site sooner rather than late.

Speaking in his capacity as MLA, and on behalf of Sinn Féin, Mr McElduff said,

"Minister Poots must be decisive and move the project of a sports stadium at Long Kesh forward.

"I urge him to bring a paper on this matter before the Executive as soon as possible. Time is of the essence.

"The debate around the Long Kesh site has been going on for well over 10 years now.

"The inquisition is now over, it is time for the department to act.

"A major opportunity now exists to provide a world class facility for sport which would command the support and confidence of the GAA, the IRFU and the IFA and the wider sporting public.

"The Long Kesh/Maze site is the only concrete proposal on the table and tomorrow's meeting of the Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee with Edwin Poots is a crucial date for this project.

"Leadership is now required.

"This project has the potential to overcome barriers in our society and help develop sport in this part of Ireland.

"At the moment we are missing major opportunities in respect of the 2012 Olympics and immediate action is needed.

"Minister Poots should get beyond first base on this issue.

"The Minister has previously stated that he is prepared to act decisively on matters. The time to act is now. " Críoch

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