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SDLP in disarray over policing transfer

4 March, 2009 - by Alex Maskey

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Policing issues Alex Maskey has accused the SDLP of being in their usual disarray when it comes to policing legislation. Mr Maskey's comments came after the SDLP leader Mark Durkan seemed incapable of making up his mind on whether he supported the transfer of powers or not.

Speaking from Westminster Mr Maskey said:

"Given the SDLP record on dealing with policing legislation it should come as no surprise that they are once again in some disarray on the issue. Remember it was the SDLP who when faced with the Mandelson Bill which gutted Patten first voted for the legislation, then against and then abstained. Seamus Mallon famously declared after the passage of that Bill that no more policing legislation was possible.

"Unlike the SDLP who have done nothing to secure the transfer of Policing and Justice powers Sinn Féin has remained committed to this key issue. We are working to ensure that the process led by Martin McGuinness and Peter Robinson will lead to the transfer of powers being advanced.

"Achieving this will remain the focus of Sinn Féin in the time ahead and we will not allow ourselves to become distracted from that task by Mark Durkan or anyone else." ENDS

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