Stormont system on shaky ground

 

Sir, – Regarding the restoration of the Stormont Assembly and Executive, paradoxically, the d’Hondt method, under which ministerial posts are allocated, is essentially an undemocratic formula because it effectively precludes a meaningful opposition, or rotating administrations. The new executive – just like the last one – is dominated by the DUP and Sinn Féin. In the carve-up of government spoils, the two parties have been allotted the majority of the ministries on offer. Crucially, they have entered government without any agreement on a comprehensive programme for government. This will allow either party to be as recalcitrant as it wants on a range of contentious issues,which will result in little or no meaningful legislation ever being enacted. What we have here is a flawed system of government that is neither democratic or effective. No administration can operate effectively without adhering rigidly to a policy of cabinet collective responsibility. That said, anything is better than direct rule. – Yours, etc,

PAUL DELANEY,

Dalkey,

Co Dublin.