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Ford optimistic about election prospects

September 19, 2003 12:00 AM

Alliance Leader David Ford will tell his party's governing body today that he is hopeful about the prospects for the party if an Assembly election is held during the autumn.

David Ford will say: "Despite the ongoing crisis - or perhaps because of it - I believe that Alliance will go into any autumn election campaign in very good heart.

"Alliance members have been at the forefront of many of the more positive changes in recent months. This includes both local and regional matters.

"Alliance Mayors have provided civic leadership in major authorities such as North Down, Ards and Lisburn. Not just the formalities, but showing Alliance taking a lead working for the entire community.

"In the field of Community Relations, we have been successful in shifting the debate on to the need to build a shared society. Remember, we persuaded the former Minister, Des Browne, to take action after the Executive had failed to do so. In a related area, that of Hate Crimes, the Government is set to announce legislation.

"We have succeeded in getting police action against illegal flags in some limited areas and are continuing to discuss the problem with the Police Service.

"The Monitoring Commission, now established by Parliament, was our idea and has a great potential to shine the spotlight and stop illegal

activity.

"We have a firm record of action, which contrasts with those who have failed to carry out their obligations under the Agreement."

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