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McGimpsey must stop avoiding scrutiny

11 November, 2009 - by Carál Ní Chuilín

Sinn Fein MLA Carál Ni Chuilín has today stated that the Health Minister, Michael McGimpsey, cannot keep avoiding scrutiny. This follows the refusal of a number of motions being brought to the floor of the Assembly due to the excuse being given that the Minister would not be available to attend.  

Speaking today Ms Ni Chuilín said:

“Michael McGimspey as Health Minister has a responsibility to the Assembly and the people that the Assembly represents to have open, accountable, and transparent practices.

“However on four occasions in recent weeks health motions and adjournment debates have not been brought forward for selection at the Business Committee as we are told that the Minister will not be able to attend the chamber in order for them to be debated.

“These motions are dealing with key issues that fall under his remit such as the protection of children and vulnerable adults and the relocation of health services support staff from Armagh.

“The Minister cannot keep delaying and avoid facing scrutiny in the chamber. Only this week the UUP were stating that the issue of written questions to the Minister were costing excessive amounts of money.

“However when the Minister fails to appear in the Assembly chamber for debate and scrutiny, which costs nothing, we have to ask is it an issue of cost or a fear of transparency and openness that the Minister is avoiding?”

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