Jones says it is time to develop new single tier authority arrangements for the proper governance of Northern Ireland
Councillor David Jones of UKIP has said he believes that the government will need to look at new arrangements for the governance of Northern Ireland.
“It is not simply a question of giving out some of Stormont’s powers to local councils as an interim measure. It goes well beyond that. Two things are clear. First Sinn Fein’s departure from the Executive, with Martin McGuinness’s promise that there will be no return to the status quo, marks the abandonment of the power sharing strategy which has been operational since 1998.
Second, it is quite clear that the three weeks allocated for negotiations to form an Executive after these pointless elections, will fail – which is a betting certainty, This will lead to an indefinite period of suspension for Stormont. That is where the smart money is.”
“Add into this mix the certainty of a hard Brexit, with a harder border and the huge pressures coming on the Irish Republic from higher EU contributions, the unfolding EU drama of Google’s and other’s tax schemes, President Trump’s vow to ‘bring the jobs home to the US,’ and you may well have a perfect political and economic storm in the Irish Republic with a movement developing to take the Irish Republic out of the EU and join the UK in some ‘Council of the Isles’ arrangement”
“This will be no temporary blip. To my mind, government will have to put new permanent governance arrangements in place for Northern Ireland which may well take the form of a single tier authority with politically neutral architecture, more focussed on the efficient delivery of devolved services and money than the sterile, endless political squabbles, inefficiency and inaction which has characterised Stormont.
There may be different variations on this theme with, for instance, a ‘Greater Belfast Metropolitan Authority’ incorporating Lisburn and Castlereagh, Newtownabbey and Glengormley, Holywood and Carrickfergus and other localities, possibly with a directly elected Mayor.”
“It’s time people smelt the coffee and worked for new structures which can deliver better government for Northern Ireland. The model of devolution should be people-centred and delivery-focussed rather than the Ruritanian pretend-parliament that Stormont had become, filled with hot air and self-importance.”
By David McNarry
There can be no doubt that 2016 was the people’s year. The integrity of our United Kingdom and it’s national majority decision in the June Referendum has to be respected. UKIP will not allow Irish and Scottish Nationalists and Republicans to wreck this Union. Brexit eclipsed all other events in 2016.
2017 needs to see the implementation of exiting the European Union. 17.4 Million of us voted to Leave and we, the people must get exactly what we voted for.
Locally, UKIP will continue to work hard to keep our Government and Council’s honest. 2017 has to see delivery and positive results impacting on our people’s quality of life, and bringing benefits from the outworkings of Stormont.
To all I wish a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
THE NI PUBLIC DEMAND ANSWERS – UKIP IS CALLING FOR AN INDEPENDENT JUDGE LED PUBLIC INQUIRY. TO GET THERE, ARLENE FOSTER NEEDS TO STEP DOWN
Commenting on the RHI Scandal and the events that have unfolded over the course of the last days and weeks, the Leader of UKIP, Paul Nuttall MEP said:
“The people of Northern Ireland demand answers. The spectacle that they witnessed yesterday at Stormont and in the media over the last week is shameful. One half of a Joint First Minister’s office delivering a statement that their partner in Government didn’t sign off on. A defiant and angry First Minister and her party then apportioning blame on everyone but themselves. We also witnessed opposition parties more interested in the politics of stuntery than asking the relevant questions.
In May, Arlene Foster and her party, the DUP claimed that they were the party that could offer strong leadership for Northern Ireland. Given this latest saga, It would appear that instead of implementing a plan for a strong Northern Ireland, her party of Government has been found asleep at the wheel. Yesterday, we witnessed a pantomime play out on the benches at Stormont. A defiant, shouty digging in of the heels on one side of the chamber, and on the other side, toothless opposition. These MLAs would do well to remember that they are there to represent the people (and not themselves or their political parties) first.”
“There are serious questions that need to be answered urgently. Namely: Why in 2012 did the then Enterprise Minister, Mrs. Foster not replicate the scheme as it is in Great Britain which included safeguards? When was the earliest date that Executive Minister(s) (including the current First Minister) knew about the failings, shortcomings and projected overspend in the scheme? Specifically when and why did the UK Treasury refuse to fund the scheme? Did the First Minister (as has been claimed) receive correspondence from officials in 2013 warning her of the potential failings of the scheme? Who were the individuals that benefited when the scheme was extended and there was suddenly a late flurry of new applicants? Amongst the list of those that benefited, are there donors to one of the Executive Parties? Were unelected Special Advisors and officials unduly influencing, lobbying or making decisions over the head of Government Minister’s?
These are some of the very serious questions that need to be addressed as a matter of urgency. This saga could ultimately end up costing the Northern Ireland taxpayer up to £400 Million. This shameful and monumental failure by the Northern Ireland Executive needs to be fully investigated. It cannot be fully, fairly and impartially addressed if the current First Minister remains in place as she would ultimately be involved in initiating the groundwork for any investigation.”
Commenting further, Mr. Nuttall added:
“UKIP is calling for a full, transparent, independent, judge-led public Inquiry into the entirety of the Heat Incentive Scheme. In order to allow any Inquiry to be given a chance of getting to the full truth, Arlene Foster should stand down as the First Minister of Northern Ireland as a matter or urgency. There are simply too many questions that currently remain unanswered.
“Northern Ireland deserves much better than the shambles that we have witnessed in recent days, weeks and months. The public is losing faith in the politicians at Stormont and understandably trust in their ability to govern in the interests of the people is dwindling daily. As the only national political party with active elected representatives in the four corners of the United Kingdom, UKIP will be holding local and national political parties and the Government’s feet to the fire to ensure that the public get the answers they deserve.”
Commenting on the RHI Scandal, UKIP Councillor David Jones said:
“Many will have watched Jonathan Bell and Arlene Foster give their frank interviews on BBC Nolan last night and each person will make up their own mind on which of the accounts to believe.
It was notable from early on that the DUP party faithful were quick to change their social media profiles to declare support for their Leader. One has to question whether this was a spontaneous act? It is much more likely that this was in fact an act orchestrated by their Headquarters. The same can be said regarding the reports of phone calls pledging support.
“It was interesting to hear allegations of the power and influence wielded by Stormont Special Advisors. These ‘SPADS’ are not the ordinary civil servants in the employ of the civil service, but political party appointees or DUP members in highly paid positions (£90,000 salaries.) So who has the final say at Stormont and more widely; who actually runs our entire Government? It would appear that the ‘SPADS’ are out of control. So who runs the show: The people you elected, or the well paid ‘golden’ advisors?”
Commenting further, Councillor Jones added:
“Another interesting point made by The First Minister herself was when she alleged that she was verbally abused by Mr. Bell. During her section of the back and forth colleague character assassination, Mrs Foster indicated that not only she, but other females had reported similar behaviour. If this was to happen in any other place of employment, a Senior Manager or board would have to take action if reported. If this is true, why then did Arlene Foster as DUP Leader not report this or take action herself against Bell, as she would have encouraged employees of other companies to do?
“Allegations and accusations will no doubt continue to fly around in the days to come. What is abundantly clear to onlookers is the fact that Stormont is broken. Those representatives have betrayed the trust placed in them by the electorate. Many of these individuals have lost any semblance of integrity.
People demand answers. What we, the people need now is a full public inquiry to learn the truth about what has happened here. This is not the first time recently that there have been serious questions raised in relation to Executive decisions. Talking to people from across this country, it is clear that faith in our politicians is low.”
“All is not right on the hill. Stormont is a ‘swamp’ that needs drained, and it needs drained now.”
David McNarry of UKIP is calling on the Northern Ireland Secretary of State to step in and assist with restoring some credibility to Stormont.
Mr. McNarry is also asking the Secretary Of State to ask the Treasury to fully investigate the Stormont version of the RHI scheme: To have the Treasury confirm when and why it refused to fund this scheme.
Additionally, he is calling on SOS Brokenshire to review the St. Andrews changes to the Belfast Agreement which removed by-elections.
“Prosecuting soldiers is not acceptable or in the public interest. Our MPs must speak up and challenge the injustice of this retrograde step.”
“To terrorists on the run, we give get out of jail free letters, yet we hound our brave soldiers. Let the public outcry be a force to stop this wrong.”
Commenting on the Tory front-bench ‘turbulence’ on Brexit, David McNarry said:
“What a carry on we have witnessed from those on the Government benches. First we had the spectacle of our Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson blundering on immigration and amnesties. That was swiftly followed by Brexit Secretary, David Davis continually dodging on payments to stay in the single market.
Talk about whipping up a ‘soft Brexit’ and providing a boost to those remainers who still seek to completely undermine the June referendum result.”
Mr. McNarry added:
“Is this Tory turbulence on our EU exit a gaffe, or is this the real negotiating plan unfolding in front of our eyes?
It’s time to harden the line, hold this Government’s feet to the fire and push them on sticking with the total or ‘hard’ Brexit that 17.4 Million people voted for across the United Kingdom. The people were clear: Leave means Leave. The Tories need to get on with it.”
Councillor David Jones has welcomed the election of Paul Nuttall MEP as the new Leader of UKIP.
Cllr. Jones said:
“Paul Nuttall’s election is a watershed moment for UKIP after all the difficulties of the past few months. Paul has described UKIP as the party for ordinary working people, replacing Labour. It was Paul who engineered the Northern strategy for UKIP targeting Labour seats in the North of England in the first place. Now we will see that strategy delivered by a credible and experienced leader.”
“UKIP will advance nationally from this point forward. The dithering of this Tory government over brexit is no longer credible. Logic alone would dictate that brexit meant leaving the single market. What else could it mean? David Cameron certainly thought so.”
“This nonsense about staying in the single market is precisely that – nonsense from people who can’t come to terms with the people’s explicitly expressed will. Negotiating a favourable trade deal has nothing to do with staying in the single market.
It is an entirely new negotiation and the UK’s position will be considerably enhanced if we have a new USA trade deal with President Trump, something Nigel Farage’s close relationship with the new US administration will make possible.”
Cllr. Jones added:
“The future success of the UK is tied up with UKIP. That will become more apparent in the coming days under the clear-sighted leadership of Paul Nuttall.”
Commenting on today’s UKIP Leadership Election announcement, UKIP Leader in Northern Ireland, David McNarry said:
“My warm congratulations to Paul Nuttall MEP. He will be a successful Leader of UKIP. Paul will unite and ignite the Party in terms of dignifying the integrity of the Brexit vote, and in preparing UKIP for the electoral challenges ahead.”
Mr. McNarry added:
“The Prime Minister would do the Country a favour in calling a General Election. UKIP will take many Labour seats and restore lost ground under the leadership of Paul Nuttall.”