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Nationalist anger over £3m mural paint plan

(Irish News)

Loyalist paramilitary murals are, for the most part, intimidatory, sectarian, bloodthirsty and grossly offensive.

It is right that such distasteful depictions are either painted over or replaced by more positive imagery. Indeed, this has already happened in a number of places and such moves should be encouraged.

However, there will be concern at the large sum of public money which the government is directing at the removal of murals.

The Re-imaging Communities Programme, which will be funded to the tune of £3.3 million, was unveiled yesterday (Monday) by NIO ministers David Hanson and Maria Eagle.

The programme envisages a wide range of public art transforming parks and housing estates and is ultimately aimed at removing the paramilitary influence.

Again, this is a laudable aspiration but there will be justifiable concern that this money will ultimately find its way into paramilitary hands.

Many people will also find it difficult to understand why such an enormous amount of money is required for this type of work.

At a time when there is pressure on a range of public spending areas, it is highly questionable whether this is the best use of taxpayers' money.

July 12, 2006
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This article appeared first in the July 11, 2006 edition of the Irish News.


This article appears thanks to the Irish News. Subscribe to the Irish News



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