We have a new first citizen

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The Sunrise is immensely cheered to hear of the election of legendary Official Unionist councillor Jim Rodgers as Lord Mayor. Those of us who have grown to cherish Jim’s regular language-mangling appearances in the local media can look forward to a whole year of fun under the Dome of Delight.

2 Comments

  1. franklittle said,

    June 6, 2007 at 10:00 am

    What exactly happened up there anyway?

    The Shinners say they were supposed to get it and the Unionists had promised it to them. The SDLP say they weren’t supposed to get it and they had every right to make a side deal with the Unionists.

    From a Dub’s perspective, it sounds a bit like whiney sectarianism. No chance policy came into the debate at all?

  2. splinteredsunrise said,

    June 6, 2007 at 11:40 am

    Well, it really is whiney sectarianism. The theory is that over the 4-year term each of the big four parties gets a shot at mayor. So the SDLP say they’ll think about backing the Shinners next year.

    What usually happens in the North is that nationalist councils rotate positions, so Derry gets a DUP mayor this year. Unionist councils traditionally operate power-sharing between the OUP and the DUP, but that falls down in places like Ards where the DUP get a majority and monopolise everything.

    Belfast is odd in that there is a balance between nationalist and unionist councillors with Alliance having the swing votes. So for rotation to work the nationalist and Alliance councillors have to insist on it every year, and not go doing side deals with the Unionists, which both Alliance and the SDLP have a tendency to do.

    The Shinners don’t like it, but then these cosy deals are usually cooked up to exclude the largest party in the city.


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