Western Isles Council says creating a better future will be joint effort
THE newly- elected leader and convener of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar have pledged to work together with colleagues for the benefit of communities across the Outer Hebrides.
Roddie Mackay, who was previously a director at Western Isles Development Trust, became leader of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar after the election on May 4.
He said: ‘ I am committed to working on behalf of communities across the Outer Hebrides.
‘As is the norm in the islands, we will not be forming an administration but I, the convener, the chairs of committees and indeed all members, will work on behalf of all our communities and I believe this system offers a better way of doing so than under the label of a political grouping.
‘I am delighted that both the groups we do have are represented in the leadership of the comhairle with both the SNP and the Uist and Barra inde- pendent groups having secured vice- chairs of committees.
Convener Norman A Macdonald said: ‘We face major challenges ahead and it is only by the whole comhairle – staff and members – working together along alongside our communities that we can hope to overcome those challenges and give those communities the future they deserve.’
Mr Mackay added: ‘We live in exciting times for the islands, largely thanks to the work of the previous comhairle, and I am determined that we build on those foundations. The Islands Bill is soon to go through parliament, an islands deal is under advanced stages of discussion and the Crown Estate revenues and management have been devolved to Scotland – although we must continue to work to bring about the further devolution to coastal communities. These are all exciting developments and there is much potential for our communities to benefit.’