In a shock announcement *Self-Styled “Grandmaster” of the Orange Order
announced all Loyal Orders would be
He read the following statement at a Press Conference this morning.
“Recognising the current stalemate in the Peace Process and in order to facilitate the democratic process and emphasise our commitment to its success, the Loyal Orders have decided that as of midnight, December 31, 2013 they will cease to exist. All our members have agreed accordingly”.
As Grandmaster of the Loyal Orders I commend our members and other supporters who sustained the struggle to keep Ulster Protestant against all odds for the past 50-odd years.
Despite your courage
time has marched on. Despite our speeches
the democratic position has gained ground. Nationalists have advanced in the corridors of power
in our beloved Stormont.
We believe we will have no place in, or role to play, in the society that will be shaped by the Haass recommendations.
We are therefore entering into a new situation and urge our members to trust in a democratic future. We are determined that our contribution to this conflict will be removed and confident this will be achieved.
In reply to questions from the Press
He said “The Loyal Orders collective decision
to disband and refrain from any interference in public life and institutions “was entirely its own“.
“We have simply come to the end of our hold on power after more than 200 years of intransigence and violence”
“Basically we reached a point where we thought it was time to stop. We still enjoy marching”
“but within ourselves we started noticing we are not having the effects we want to achieve “
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“on the Nationalist population of Northern Ireland’
“There will be no more Orange marches”
He said he knew that people would react “emotionally” to news.
”I suppose it’s very touching and hardly surprising. With the Loyal Orders I know that we were right there in people’s lives and in their heads even. We obviously had an effect on them.”
He said that after laying down their burdens of sectarianism and bigotry,
Orangemen intended to lead ”absolutely normal private lives” – doing things around the house, reading, maybe a bit of travel – and they had no plans to start on any projects as an organization.