Tom Ekin: Assembly must give a lead in the aftermath of Brexit

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I feel that I have been railroaded onto the road of Brexit by a combination of government incompetence and deceit of others.

A decision as serious as Brexit surely demands rational argument by people of ability and integrity.

Even in my small amateur sports club years ago, we needed substantial majorities to make any radical change.

Having worked in business in various countries I have experienced serious changes, and what was needed was a steady hand on the tiller, and an ability to get positive things done.

I worry that the progressive plans, not just of my business and others, but of Belfast and Northern Ireland have been thrown into disarray, by the uncertainty of the present.

I worry at the amount of time, money, effort, and skill which will be necessary to work our way through the next few years, as yet another diversion in the path of making the progress which is for the benefit of everyone.

The economic goals set by the recently restructured local councils will be seriously jeopardised.

The Former Minister of Enterprise, Trade and Industry (now First Minister) will know the four legs of the stool for attracting investment are: political stability, English language, employee skills and easy access to Europe.

We now have voluntarily broken one leg!

To help us to consolidate and refocus can the executive give us some comfort in setting a tight timetable for completion of at least three of the six main infrastructure projects which frees up the transport gridlock, gives hope, and creates job directly and indirectly.

They are: NI transport Hub at Great Victoria Street, York Street Road junction and the route to the Northwest.

Likewise social projects such as quicker building of houses on derelict sites and the removal of barriers which stop the flow of people across the city, should be fasttracked.

There is too much negative political intervention.

Assembly: please give us a dynamic lead.

Tom Ekin, Former Alliance Councillor, Belfast