Brandon Lewis MP pays tribute to Lord Trimble

'Braveness, vision and commitment': Brandon Lewis MP pays tribute to Lord Trimble

Brandon Lewis MP

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It was with great sadness that I learned of the death of David Trimble this week.

He was a stalwart of our domestic and international politics. He was a brilliant statesman and a dedicated public servant, committed to serving the people and communities of Northern Ireland during his 32-year long career in Parliament.

Entered the House of Commons in 1990 and later served as leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, becoming the first minister in Northern Ireland in 1998 following the signing of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement.

The people of the whole of the United Kingdom are grateful for all they have achieved for our union

He will be remembered for his tireless efforts to change politics and the political landscape for the better in Northern Ireland and the rest of Britain. Most importantly, his legacy as an architect of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement, bringing peace and stability to Northern Ireland after the horrors of decades of troubles, will live on forever. An astonishing achievement that changed the course of our history.

There is much more to do to address the legacy left behind by that dark period in our shared history. During my time as Secretary of Northern Ireland, I saw firsthand how the Legacy of Troubles affects the people and communities of Northern Ireland. For many, the pain of those years is as raw today as it was then. That’s why I’m proud to introduce the Northern Ireland (Heritage and Reconciliation) Bill earlier this year, to provide better outcomes for victims and survivors, to ensure they get more information, what to do with their loved ones Happened and finally provide the protection our veterans deserve.

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But it is because of the vision and commitment of people like David Trimble that there is now an entire generation of young people who have grown up in Northern Ireland knowing only peace. The agreement remains the cornerstone of peace and stability in the province – unlocking the amazing talent and enterprise that exists in Northern Ireland is possible only thanks to the framework provided by the agreement.

The Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement was a vision for Northern Ireland in which all communities can participate and work together. A place where you get a chance to flourish, no matter who you are or where you come from. Today, Northern Ireland is a creative and technological superpower.

Even after nearly 25 years, this agreement is as relevant today as it was then. In his final few months, David was a passionate advocate for maintaining its integrity in all its dimensions, warning of the consequences of not taking action to address the challenges raised by the current implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol and its long-term implications. could. There is a sense of identity to the unionist communities of Northern Ireland.

David’s selfless leadership and tireless dedication resulted in a settlement that earned him the Nobel Peace Prize. The Nobel organization itself recognized him for his role as a “seeker of compromise” and commended him for his “political bravery”.

The people of the entire United Kingdom are grateful for all that our union has achieved. The bravery, vision and commitment he displayed throughout his life will be greatly missed by all those who knew and admired him.

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Brandon Lewis is a Conservative MP for Great Yarmouth. He was Secretary of Northern Ireland from 2020 to 2022.

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