A Derry and Strabane councillor has questioned whether anyone in the council chamber believed that the money which will not be sent to Europe once the UK leaves the EU, will come to benefit the people of the North West?
Proposing that an Impact Assessment be prepared for the Council area and wider North West region in light of the outcome of the Brexit EU Referendum, Sinn Fein Councillor Dan Kelly said that people in the area, who had voted to remain, were angry that their children’s futures have been decided by people on another island.
“The EU result has been a social and economic shock,” he said. “The worst thing to hit Ireland since partition.”
He said it was a great shame that EU funding which has promoted positive relationships is being put in jeopardy with no plan B.
SDLP councillor Martin Reilly said his party has always been passionately pro-European.
He said people feared the return of the border.
“We must work to ensure that the rights and protection people cherish as part of EU citizenship are retained going forward,” he added.
“It is incumbent on all of us to reflect the views of the people who live here and the people who live here are pro-European.”
Independent Councillor Maurice Devenney said that there was a lot of scaremongering going on.
“We are unclear of the future,” he said. “Sinn Fein say it was the worst thing to happen but the 30-40 years of murder and mayhem carried out was the worst thing to happen.
“It is unclear and that is why we need the assessment approved so we can work our way out. We are safer within the UK and out of the EU.”
The motion which was proposed at a special meeting of Derry and Strabane Council on Wednesday was proposed by Dan Kelly and seconded by Mickey Cooper.
There was strong agreement for the proposal with only two councillors voting against it.
Council will now engage with stakeholders to carry out the £50,000 Impact Assessment Study.