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Dallat accused of misrepresenting DRD Committee

8 November, 2007


Sinn Féin Regional Development Committee member, Raymond McCartney has accused SDLP MLA John Dallat of misrepresenting the committee after claiming that it 'unanimously agreed' to reject proposals for work on the Derry - Coleraine railway when in fact that committee did no such thing.

Mr McCartney said:

"It seems to be an almost weekly occurrence for John Dallat to have a disagreement with the facts of what takes place in the Regional Development Committee.

"To claim that the Committee 'unanimously agreed' to reject proposals for work on the Derry - Coleraine railway when in fact the committee did no such thing and is unlikely to form a considered opinion until later in the month is dishonest. He is misrepresenting the views of the committee to suit his own narrow political agenda.

"The fact is that rather than selling the people of the North West short we now have a £12 million project on the table to secure the future of the track and a further substantial programme of improvements for the line estimated to cost some £50 million.

This time last year the language linked to the Derry to Ballymena line was 'non-core', 'lesser used' and the belief was that it was the precursor for closure. The proposed spending on the line is a clear and unambiguous declaration from Conor Murphy that Derry will have a rail network fit for the 21st Century.

"People are wise to John's party political point scoring and will be aware that previous SDLP finance ministers which included Mark Durkan only £1.5 million that was spent on the line." ENDS

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