SDLP Foyle Westminster candidate Mark Durkan has paid tribute to Enda Kenny as he steps down as leader of Fine Gael.
Mr Durkan praised the Taoiseach’s recent efforts to ensure the Good Friday Agreement’s provision for a United Ireland by consent is sealed into the future framework for EU-UK relations.
Mr Durkan also paid tribute to the Irish Government’s commitment and funding for the North West Cancer Centre at Altnagelvin Hospital in Derry, under the leadership of Mr Kenny.
Mr Durkan said: “I was in personal contact with Enda Kenny throughout his recent judicious efforts as a co-guarantor of the Good Friday Agreement to ensure that the singular integrity of the principle of consent is sealed into the future framework for EU-UK relations. His distinctive efforts on this front could be seen as diligent guardianship of the Agreement and Irish constitutional proprieties. But it also offers the practical benefit of registering that Northern Ireland is unique in the UK ‘in the framework for future relations with the European Union’.
“Over the years, Enda has always been very well received at Westminster. At different events, he has highlighted the importance of the tourism and hospitality sectors throughout the island of Ireland – including the importance of Derry’s success in getting City of Culture and the All-Ireland Fleadh.
“He has also consistently acknowledged the importance of the development of energy throughout the island – including the renewables-related grid, infrastructure and exports of both renewable technology and energy.”