British-Irish inter governmental conference required not stop-gap measures – O'Neill
A British-Irish Intergovernmental conference rather than stop-gap measures is required to pave the way for a restoration of power-sharing, Sinn Féin Vice-President Michelle O’Neill has said today.
Michelle O’Neill said:
“This is a disappointing budget which doesn’t provide the resources needed for the public services our people need and deserve.
“It’s not good for householders, for victims, for health, for our economy, our colleges or the homeless.
“Seven departments, including those which serve vulnerable communities, housing and arts, face real-terms decreases.
“The British government has failed once again the victims and survivors of the conflict by refusing to release the funding requested by the Lord Chief Justice for legacy inquests as she had agreed in the recent talks process.
“We need more than stop-gap measures.
“We should be in a reformed Executive today, with the local parties setting out a budget and acting as a bulwark against Tory austerity.
“Equally clear is there can be no return to direct rule. That is the position of the Irish Government, our position and it is outside of the terms of our agreements.
“The two governments must act on their responsibilities as co-guarantors of the Good Friday Agreement which provides for a British-Irish Intergovernmental Conference.
“They must initiate this conference as a matter of urgency and move to implement previous agreements and meet their obligations on equality.”