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Unionist calls for DRD Minister to resign purely politically driven - O'Dowd

3 January, 2011 - by John O'Dowd

Sinn Féin assembly member John O’Dowd has dismissed unionist calls for the DRD Minister Conor Murphy to resign as ‘pathetic politicking at a time when ordinary people are suffering’.

Mr O’Dowd said:

“It is ironic that the unionist politicians who enthusiastically support the NI Water GoCo model established under direct rule and which removed direct ministerial power over operational decisions on water are now criticising the DRD Minister with the politically driven charge that he failed to do enough in the face of the current crisis around the same. One of these, Sammy Wilson, couldn’t even be bothered to attend last week’s emergency Executive meeting such was his concern on the issue.

“It should also be noted that these are the very same politicians who have behind the scenes been pressing for the introduction of water charges while publicly pedalling a different line. People should be under no illusions, if either the DUP or UUP had been in control of DRD Water Charges would have been introduced years ago.

“Both unionist parties would have no issue with pouring millions more of public money into a GoCo model which clearly isn’t fit for purpose as consistently stressed by Conor Murphy. Instead of petty pathetic politicking on the issue let both unionist parties make it clear where they stand on the future governance of NI Water when Conor Murphy presents proposals on future governance shortly. Presumably since they are calling for more ministerial intervention, they are now seeking an end to the GoCo model and the privatisation agenda they have been on for years."

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