We are pleased that, though belatedly, the Northern Ireland Centenary will be marked permanently in the curtilage of Parliament Buildings by a Centenary Stone.
It was over two years ago that the Assembly Commission refused a collective request from the leaderships of our parties to erect such a commemorative stone, causing great hurt to the unionist community.
Earlier this month we renewed our request to the Assembly Commission. This time they have given approval, which is most welcome.
The stone which will be in the shape of a map of Northern Ireland, mounted on a Portland stone plinth, will be sited on a raised area to the west of Parliament Buildings. The stone will be paid for by unionist MLAs and therefore will not cost the public purse.
Our only regret is that Sinn Fein blocked the proposal when first made, but this time they were unable to do so.
We will give details in due course of the public unveiling of the stone.”