People of my generation owe Albert Reynolds a huge debt for his work for Peace – Feeley

Fianna Fáil Councillor, John Paul Feeley has added his words of sympathy to Kathleen Reynolds, and her family on the passing of our former Taoiseach, Albert Reynolds. ‘People my age and indeed many of all ages forget the change that has happened in this country as a result of the Peace Process. When Albert Reynolds became Taoiseach many were amazed to hear him speak of Peace at a time when the Troubles were rampant. But he took up the tentative efforts of Fr. Alex Reid and John Hume to being an end to the Troubles. His leadership and conviction to forge a strong relationship with then British Prime-minister, John Major was key to the preparation of the Downing Street Declaration. It is easy to make little of politics but Albert Reynolds through the Peace Process showed how it can work. People of my generation owe Albert Reynolds a huge debt for his work for Peace.’ Albert Reynolds had a long career in business and many other achievements in his political career along with his work in the Peace Process. ‘Albert Reynolds was from a generation of politicians who believed in getting things done. He operated just before the onset of the ‘twenty-four’ hour media cycle and was therefore able to work in a very different way in politics. He brought is flair for business to politics, getting to the nub of the issue quickly and through his work such as extending the telephone network and establishing County Enterprise Boards made huge efforts to modernise the economy of Rural Ireland.’ ‘ I recall very well the Saturday night of his return to Longford as Taoiseach. It was an exciting event for someone like myself, very young but interested in politics, not least because our then local TD, the late John Wilson was there having been made Tanaiste.’ ENDS