People Before Profit candidate Eamonn McCann has described last night’s shooting in Creggan as “cruel, counterproductive and wrong.”
He went on to say: “Working-class areas of Derry have some of the worst rates of poverty, deprivation and alienation in the North.
“This underlies many of the social problems, including the drugs problem, afflicting families already under pressure.
“Paramilitary shootings do nothing whatever to address these problems. Such attacks have been going on for more than 40 years, and what have they achieved? Has crime and drugs use been stopped? Of course not - because the root of the problems goes far deeper into our divided society.
“If all those who rightly condemn last night’s attack would put their energies into securing a detox unit and other facilities for Derry - as some have repeatedly promised - we might be closer to getting a grip on the drugs problem in particular.
“If there was a genuine mass movement for change to give people hope, we’d be in a better position to face problems arising from neglect by authorities both here and across the water.
“We need a revival of the community spirit that sustained working-class communities here throughout the Troubles. But masked men with guns who say ‘Stand back, leave it to us’ discourage any such development. They belittle the role of the people.
“However, the first thing that needs to happen is for paramilitary organisations to cut it out.”