UUP & SDLP seeking public money for party coffers
Sinn Féin deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness has accused both the UUP and SDLP of lobbying for public money for their parties in talks with the British government at a time when others were seeking to find money to offset the worst of the Tory cuts.
Mr McGuinness said:
“Much of the recent commentary from the SDLP and UUP has deliberately ignored the fact that the cuts to our budget have been imposed by the Tories in Westminster. The Tory approach has created a very difficult situation. We are working hard to get the budget right, to develop additional revenue, protect public services and sustain and create jobs.
“It is up to all Ministers on the Executive to act collectively in order to deliver the best deal possible. Peter Robinson and myself have been relentless in seeking the British government honour their agreements and reinstate our budget entitlements.
“While doing this I was disappointed to learn that both the UUP and SDLP were lobbying for public money for their parties in talks with the British government in exchange for adopting an oppositional role in the Assembly. At a time when frontline services are under attack, the priority of the UUP and SDLP has been to use their influence with the Tory government to try and extract money for their party coffers.
“It is time that both parties began to act with the rest of us in the Executive, began to hold the Tories to account and began to play a collective and constructive role in the Executive and most importantly put the needs of ordinary people in front of their narrow party financial interests.” ENDS