Thursday, October 06, 2005


Don't allow DUP delay - Durkan

The Government must not allow the Democratic Unionist Party to hold up political progress in the North, SDLP leader Mark Durkan claimed today.

"If the issues that caused the suspension of the political institutions have been dealt with, then the institutions must be re-established without delay," he said.

He warned the Irish Government that the DUP should now address all issues with the other parties within the framework of the institutions.

"But if the Government entertains the DUP with the idea that there will be a whole pub crawl of pre-conditions and concessions on the way into the institutions, then the DUP is going to keep this thing going for a year or two years."

"With decommissioning achieved, the veto on the institutions has gone," he said.

"We’re now on the Agreement road and that’s where the DUP can have their mandate properly respected."

I agree with Mr Durkan. There's a card that the two governments must play if the DUP don't want to play ball - Joint Authority.

Nationalists put up with the Assembly while they await their primary objective - Irish unity. With the Assembly down, nationalists have nothing. Unionists on the other hand have no problem with Direct Rule and are quite content to see the institutions remain down.

I believe that this is unfair and bordering (no pun intended) on discrimination.

Joint Authority doesn't suit either side and will ensure that all sides live up to their electoral obligations.

The two governments must have the courage to call the DUP's bluff on this matter.


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