Speaking in response to the decision by the EU Special Programmes Body’s decision to withdraw funding for the proposed Peace and Reconciliation Centre at the Maze, NI Lib Dems Chair John O’Neill stated:
Yet again, as with the putative National Stadium of Northern Ireland, a major flagship project which had the potential to create a new common space for all the people of Northern Ireland has evaporated from the agenda, and from the hopes of those people, because of the heat – and not light – released by the raking over of the ashes of our sectarian past. It is truly disheartening that even with the support of all of our fellow Europeans, some local parties and representatives are unable to show the modicum of generosity of spirit and creativity of thought that would realise the potential for the new, unified future that Northern Ireland deserves, and has shown itself time and again to want. The stadium was a gift for our future. The Maze Centre would have helped to give the gift of healing of the past. We must sense that many of our local representatives can look neither forward or back with any of the grace of statesmanship.