manchester Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images

Manchesters vielversprechende Zukunft

MANCHESTER – Ich bin ein stolzer Mancunian (wie die Einwohner Manchesters genannt werden), obwohl ich seit meinem 18. Lebensjahr, als ich die Schule abschloss und zu studieren begann, dort nicht dauerhaft lebte. Ich wurde im St. Mary’s Hospital in der Nähe des Stadtzentrums geboren und wuchs in einem netten Vorort in South Manchester auf. Die Grundschule besuchte ich in einer nahe gelegenen etwas raueren Gegend, bevor ich in Burnage die weiterführende Schule besuchte. Achtunddreißig Jahre nachdem ich in Burnage war, ging dort offenbar auch Salman Abedi, der mutmaßliche Bombenleger der Manchester Arena, zur Schule.  

Die von Abedi begangene Gräueltat, die der Islamische Staat für sich reklamierte, ist wohl schlimmer als das schreckliche Bombenattentat der Irisch-Republikanischen Armee, das vor 21 Jahren Teile des Stadtzentrums zerstörte -  ein Ereignis, von dem vielfach angenommen wird, dass es eine Schlüsselrolle bei der Wiedergeburt Manchesters spielte. Zumindest in diesem Fall gaben die Bombenleger 90 Minuten zuvor eine Warnung aus, die dazu beitrug, dass keine Todesopfer zu beklagen waren. Im Gegensatz dazu tötete Abedi mit seinem barbarischen Akt mindestens 22 Menschen, darunter viele Kinder.

In den letzten Jahren beteiligte ich mich auf politischer Ebene stark an der wirtschaftlichen Wiederbelebung dieser großartigen Stadt. Ich war Vorsitzender einer wirtschaftlichen Beratergruppe des Greater Manchester Council und anschließend saß ich der Cities Growth Commission vor, die sich für die Schaffung des „Northern Powerhouse” einsetzte, eines Programms, im Rahmen dessen die Städte Nordenglands zu einer geschlossenen Wirtschaftseinheit verbunden wurden. Anschließend war ich kurz Mitglied der Regierung David Camerons, um meinen Beitrag bei der Umsetzung der Maßnahmen in den frühen Stadien des Northern Powerhouse-Programms zu leisten.

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