Northern Ireland news

Concerns raised about lack of All-Ireland approach to Covid-19

Aontú councillor Denise Mullen
Connla Young

A COUNCILLOR diagnosed with Covid-19 has voiced concern about the difference in approach to the crisis on both sides of the border.

Mid Ulster Aontú councillor Denise Mullen has been in isolation since she was diagnosed with the potentially deadly virus last week.

She lives at home with her 77-year-old mother Olive and two sons aged 10 and 19.

A former SDLP councillor, her father Denis was shot dead by the notorious loyalist Glenanne Gang in 1975.

In recent weeks authorities on both sides of the border have outlined different plans as they seek to lift lockdown restrictions.

The 48-year-old, who battled back from cancer in 2014, spoke those week of the impact the virus has had on her.

While still in isolation Ms Mullen said voiced concern about a lack of an All-Ireland approach to dealing with the pandemic.

”The lack of a harmonised, all-Ireland approach to tackling the Coronavirus, to locking down the island, and to exiting from the strategy has been to the detriment to all – but in particular border communities,” she said.

Ms Mullen pointed to the approach taken by New Zealand in combating the virus.

“New Zealand have exhibited the success of utilising the advantages intrinsic in being an island combatting a pandemic – why is that neither the northern Executive nor the southern government sought to follow suit and unite the 32 counties' approach to the pandemic?”

“It seems we cannot even ensure all parts of the island exit the lockdown at the same time, let alone tackle it in harmony,” she added.

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe now to get full access

Northern Ireland news