Sinn Féin - On Your Side

All-Ireland only way to achieve balanced infrastructure development

2 November, 2005

Sinn Féin General Secretary Mitchel McLaughlin accused British direct rule ministers of failing to take forward projects to develop infrastructure on an all-Ireland basis.

Mr McLaughlin said:

"Having met with direct rule ministers on a number of occasions it is clear they are failing to push forward the all-Ireland agenda in a number of areas, particularly on infrastructure and transport.

"The Department of Regional Development and the Department of Transport must spearhead joint working mechanisms to develop transport corridors across Ireland. Ignoring the Northwest, which has suffered prolonged social and economic hardship, is a mistake. The region needs vital infrastructure to attract and sustain investment and much needed employment. It is not enough to talk about Derry/Donegal in policy documents when nothing is done to develop the Northwest region.

"In Dublin, Martin Cullen this week announced a 34 Euro billion ten year road and transport. This includes an Atlantic Corridor with a dual carriageway from Letterkenny to Waterford. Yet, Direct Rule Ministers say it will be 2025 until we, possibly, get a dual carriageway from Derry to Belfast.

"The DUP and others who refuse to share power with Sinn Féin have a stark choice to make. Act with courage and confidence and make a new future for all through co-operation or condemn those who voted for you to bad government and British direct rule.

"Sinn Féin and others continue to work towards building a consensus for Irish unity and it is imperative that all who recognise the folly of partition, including those in the business, educational, health, agriculture and community sectors, increase pressure on both governments to adopt a co-ordinated approach to investment and development on an all-Ireland basis. Many now recognise that partition presents obstacles for economic and infrastructural development that cannot be addressed except through integrated strategic planning on an all-Ireland basis." ENDS

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