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Campbell Challenged Over Human Rights Commissioner Remarks

26 March, 2009 - by Maeve McLaughlin

Sinn Féin Assembly member in Assembly member Martina Anderson has told DUP MP Gregory Campbell that he would be better off concentrating on upping his performance as a Minister rather than trying to impede the work of the Human Rights Commissioner.

Ms Anderson’s comments come after Mr Campbell criticised Monica McWilliams after she raised concerns about the length of detention and the conditions of those currently being held in Antrim PSNI station.

Ms Anderson said:

“Given Mr Campbell’s particularly poor tenure to date as DCAL Minister, with his failure on the Long Kesh site and frequent bouts of misinformed and inappropriate commentary, it would suit Gregory Campbell better if he concentrated on upping his performance in the job he is paid to do rather than trying to impede the work of the Human Rights Commissioner.

“The Human Rights Commissioner is tasked with upholding the rights of all regardless of where they find themselves. Yesterday evening after visiting Antrim PSNI station she raised legitimate and very worrying concerns about both the length of detention of those being held there and the conditions they were being held in. Monica McWilliams was doing her job, a policy Gregory Campbell would do well to follow.

“Sinn Féin have articulated similar concerns about the status of those being held over recent dissident republican activity and we will continue to do so. We will also be seeking urgent meetings with the PSNI leadership on the state of the Antrim facility and its apparent failure to comply with the very highest human rights standards.”

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