MP for South Belfast Dr Alasdair McDonnell has said he is deeply saddened at the passing of one of Ireland’s greatest economic and political minds-TK Whitaker.
Speaking following his death yesterday Dr McDonnell said:
“TK Whitaker has been a seminal figure in Irish life for the past century. He played an absolutely pivotal role in improving economic standards of living across the Island of Ireland. We are all deeply saddened at the passing of someone who has helped shape modern day Ireland as we know it.
In the North we should be particularly grateful for the interest TK Whitaker showed in our troubled past and for his help in moving us along the road to peace and greater prosperity. TK Whittaker wrote a policy document in 1971 called ‘A Possible Solution’ which effectively became the very basis of the Good Friday Agreement almost 30 years later-for that we are eternally in his debt.
TK Whitaker has received many plaudits and awards over the years which were richly deserved. I was delighted that the SDLP arranged a special tribute lunch in Dublin for him in October 2014 which was supported by hundreds of key friends and supporters.
Only last month TK Whitaker reached his 100th Birthday-a milestone celebration for a man who devoted his life to improving the outlook and circumstances of every citizen right across the Island of Ireland. We are much poorer today for his passing-but take heart and inspiration from his incredibly rich legacy of work.”