Sinn Féin MLA Pat Sheehan has called on PSNI Chief Constable Matt Baggott to get on with the job of policing and to stop wasting public money trying to defend the indefensible.
The Policing Board member was speaking after the Chief Constable announced he is to appeal the verdict of a Belfast court that the PSNI had facilitated “illegal and sometimes violent” loyalist flag protests passing Short Strand.
Pat Sheehan said,
“I welcome this ruling by Justice Treacy that the PSNI clearly failed to protect the residents of Short Strand over countless illegal marches by flag protestors past the area.
“I’m disappointed that despite this ruling that the PSNI Chief Constable has stated that he will appeal the verdict.
“Despite the Chief Constable’s protestations of what he believes expectations at the time were the public expects their homes and their communities to be protected by the police.
“They quite rightly expect that the police upholds the law and protects residents from violence and intimidation from bully boys and thugs engaged in illegal marches.
“Is Matt Baggott now telling us that the police were not up to the job or were they simply not willing to face down loyalist violence and intimidation?
“Sinn Féin will be raising this matter at the Policing Board and the fact that Matt Baggott is wasting public funds defending the indefensible.” END/CRÍOCH