Friday 23 February 2018

Empathetic Empey was the voice of moderate unionism

The UUP leader was always willing and able to make the right political choices at the right times and thereby help all of the North, says John-Paul McCarthy

SIR Reg Empey bows out this week, having failed to reverse the inexorable decline of the once mighty Ulster Unionist Party after David Trimble.

Empey radiated dignity and decency throughout his ministerial career in the Northern Ireland executive, and he leaves us pondering the long-term viability of that particular brand of unionism to which he gave his last full measure of devotion.

Empey and his colleagues in the UUP have to seek consolation in less immediate contexts than the electoral one, which has looked increasingly inhospitable over the last decade.

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