belfast city hall1

Meet NILGA’s Derek McCallan, a rare political optimist in Northern Ireland who argues that the coming election in May offers extraordinary opportunities for change in local communities. He tells me that councillors are the most public spirited people you can get and that May could turn out to be the most meaningful local election in forty years.


After a week of gloomy debate about the efficacy of voting and the state of party politics in Northern Ireland last week, it’s helpful to hear a voice from behind the scenes, someone who works with elected representatives in local government from across the political spectrum.

Derek McCallan heads up the Northern Ireland Local Government Association. NILGA is a lobby group for councils and councillors from all political backgrounds meaning McCallan works side by side with members from Sinn Féin, the DUP, and everyone in between.

Read the rest at Slugger O’Toole! 

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