Letters: “The Orkney Way”?

Dear Orkney News,

It’s said that imitation is the finest form of flattery, and I couldn’t let Councillor Woodbridge’s letter to The Orcadian on 17 March 2022 regarding her ’Orkney Way’ suggestion pass without comment.

Heather seems to want to encourage any newly elected Independent Councillor to join a quasi-Party arrangement. This has got we Greens, and no doubt the Orkney Manifesto Group, scratching our heads! The whole point of a political Party is to reflect shared values and present a manifesto to the electorate, such that voters fully understand what they’re getting from their local politicians.

That’s why I’ve been so critical of the independent nature of OIC politics – very few of the Independent Councillors will nail their colours to the mast, which in practice means that procrastination pervades the Council chamber, thereby allowing senior Councillors to form cliques easily and force their agendas through, paying little attention to community wishes or non-existent manifestos.

Instead, I’d appeal to the Orkney electorate to look at all manifestos before voting. There are five Green candidates, three of whom are in their 20s, and two of whom are female. We’d like to break the mould of Orkney politics and get the voices of young people and women into the Chamber. These are the candidates that will prioritise the climate agenda by thinking globally and acting locally. We will push for a better financial settlement for Orkney, new renewable-fuelled ferries and affordable housing in a way that the current Council simply hasn’t.

Orkney voters can rest assured that these Greens will have an ‘Orkney-first’ approach, with the added bonus of two Green Ministers and five MSPs to help to get things done in government. I’d like to suggest that the Green Way is actually a better and more positive solution than other alternatives. Please consider voting Green on 5 May for change, to remove at least some of the grey haired and suited gentlemen. For information, the Orkney Greens’ Manifesto will be published on social media and publicised shortly.

Yours sincerely, Councillor Steve Sankey, Orkney Greens Co-Convenor

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